Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sketch Tuesday 02.28.2012

Christina Ellis


Kenny Callicutt


Kenny Callicutt


Nolan Baker



Monday, February 27, 2012

Extended Thank Yous

The Directors sharing their reaction to winning the Oscar® for Best Animated Short.

“The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore” from Moonbot Studios Wins Best Animated Short in 2011 Oscars

Image source: msn.com

William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg take home Academy Award for first original film

Los Angeles, CA – February 27, 2012 – Just announced last night at the 84th Annual Academy Awards®, Moonbot Studios took home an Oscar in the animated short film category for the studio’s very first project, “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore,” directed by William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg.  “Morris Lessmore” was released in February 2011 in conjunction with the launch of the studio itself.

“The idea for the film was inspired by a dear friend and mentor, Bill Morris, a lover of books and a grand old gentleman of children's book publishing,” said William Joyce, co-founder of Moonbot Studios and co-director on the “Morris Lessmore” film.  “I know Bill would be touched to see a film about his life’s passion honored by the Academy.”

Inspired, in equal measures, by Hurricane Katrina, Buster Keaton, The Wizard of Oz, and a love for books, “Morris Lessmore” is a poignant, humorous allegory about the curative powers of story.  Using a variety of techniques, including filmed miniatures, stop motion, 2D, and 3D animation, award-winning author and illustrator William Joyce and co-director Brandon Oldenburg present a hybrid style of animation that harkens back to silent films and MGM Technicolor musicals and is the most cutting edge of today.

“We created our film and our studio at the same time,” said Brandon Oldenburg, co-founder of Moonbot Studios and co-director on the “Morris Lessmore” film.  “The short is a sort of gumbo of everything we love about film and animation and so is our studio.”

The Moonbot team created thousands of hand-painted books and constructed a full city block of the New Orleans French Quarter in 1/12th scale.  The entire production of the film spanned a year’s time.  After the release of the short, Moonbot unveiled an interactive iPad App version of the story which has received worldwide praise as a ground breaking leap forward in storytelling on the iPad.  The best-selling, interactive “Morris Lessmore” iPad App is available on iTunes for $4.99 in the App Store.

Much of what has allowed Moonbot to flourish creatively can be attributed to the company’s strong local roots, including support from the State of Louisiana and the City of Shreveport.  The creators are closely associated with ArtSpace, Shreveport’s regional arts center, and the Robinson Film Center, a non-profit organization that hosts independent, international, and classic films and assists with film education.  In keeping with the local theme, Joyce and Oldenburg were even outfitted for the Oscars in custom tuxedos created by Dickies, the clothing designer traditionally known for its “work wear” based in Oldenburg’s hometown of Fort Worth, Texas.

“We can’t emphasize enough how much the support of Louisiana Economic Development and the Shreveport community has helped to get Moonbot where it is in such a short time,” said Lampton Enochs, co-founder of Moonbot Studios and co-producer on the “Morris Lessmore” film.   “With the support of State incentives and workforce training programs, we’ve been able to build a strong team of talented artists and storytellers and have far exceeded our expectations for what we could accomplish in our first months of business.”  

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Oscars® Roundup & More!

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In case you missed it, here's the segment that aired earlier today on Good Morning America.  Your Three Words: Oscar Nominees Edition includes a Moonbot reaction clip!

This is the week of Winner Predictions. Here are a few lists:
DMagazine's interview with Directors William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg is a must-read. Additionally, check out this Immersed In Movies post.

Brilliant composer John Hunter on creating the music for Morris: "Brandon and Bill always made themselves available to take a listen to a riff or short sequence. It was a true collaboration. It was a great way of working. Unconventional by todays standards. But very effective."

NPR Marketplace is airing a segment produced by Red River Radio's Kate Archer Kent tomorrow (Friday 2/24)! The show can be heard on 89.9 in Shreveport at 6:30 p.m. It airs at 6:30 as well on KPCC 89.3 in Los Angeles.

For those of you who wonder "how'd they do that?" MoonBOT Jamil Lahham breaks down the spinning house shot on his blog.  

We were thrilled to come across this  CG Society feature as well as CG Hub's post. 

Discovery.com has posted a series of Curiosity video interviews with William Joyce: 

Lunar Activities
If you're in Shreveport this weekend, check out the Oscar-nominated short films screening at the Robinson Film Center. Showtimes are 11 AM Saturday and Sunday morning.  

Finally, last weekend Brandon Oldenburg was the Grand Marshall of Shreveport's Krewe of Highland Mardi Gras parade! Indeed, somehow between flying to LA for Oscars events, BrandonBOT managed to lead the procession aboard the Moonbot float. Robert Trudeau notes: the BOTS were outfitted in custom Dickies coveralls.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Oscars® News


Earlier this week, Cartoon Brew spoke with "The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore"  Co-Directors William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg. The resulting article is one of a series of interviews with this year's Academy Award® nominated animated short Directors.

CBS Sunday Morning will feature Moonbot Studios in their February 26th broadcast. Find your local airtime here.

ShortsHD is screening the Oscar-nominated documentary, live action, and animated short films in theaters across the US, Canada, and Europe. Find a particpating venue nearest you.

Morris makes The Must List in the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly, on newsstands tomorrow (Feb 17). EW also covered a certain "photobomb" meme making internet rounds at about this time last week.

Kicking off the Academy Award Nominee adventure in LA.

Follow @MorrisLessmore on Twitter for special photo-updates from the Directors as they embark upon various special events leading up to Oscars night on Sunday Feb 26th.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012