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National Cartoonist Society announces Reuben, divisional awards

buildingstories Baby Blues creator Rick Kirkman and Pickles creator Brian Crane shared the Reuben Award this year, which honors the outstanding cartoonist of the year. According to the Daily Cartoonist’s Alan Gardner, this is only the second time in the award’s history that two cartoonists have shared the award, the previous time being in 1968.

The National Cartoonist Society presented the Reuben and its divisional awards in Pittsburgh, Penn. last night. Other winners included Rich Webber, director of the Aardman segments that appear on Cartoon Network’s DC Nation, as well as Joann Sfar for the animated The Rabbi’s Cat, Chris Ware for Building Stories, Bernie Wrightson for Frankenstein Alive, Alive!, and Vince Dorse for the Untold Tales of Bigfoot webcomic.

The complete list of winners can be found below.

THE REUBEN AWARD for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year:

Rick Kirkman and Brian Crane


Rich Webber, Director, Aardman Animation Studios, DC Nation

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Joann Sfar on drawing comics vs. directing films

Joann Sfar’s not the first (or the last) comic creator to make the transition to movie-making, but a recent interview for the Wall Street Journal on his French film Gainsbourg the artist-turned-director laments about the difficulties of comics versus that of film.

“It’s actually more difficult to do a comic book than a movie,” Sfar told WSJ‘s Nick Andersen. “If something doesn’t work in a movie, you can blame the crew or do it again. If it doesn’t work in a comic book, then it’s your fault. I know I have many things to learn in movies, but I had so much fun making the movie. Comic books may not have been useful for making a movie, but drawing was. My crew all had more than 20 years of experiences, and I’m a newbie. So I didn’t come with orders, I came with graphical suggestions. There are visual propositions in the film that may be appealing for the studio people.”

Sfar goes on to explain that when creating the animated film The Rabbi’s Cat, the production of animation was much slower than drawing comics, comparing his page rate of five pages per day as a cartoonist with an animator’s typical rate being one second of film per day.

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