Thursday, January 28, 2010

"Animanafofaniscope" is here!

(Burbank) Although attendees had signed affidavits promising to refrain from using the overworked phrase "game changer", a goodly amount of buzz was created last night at an event held by Snelgrove Industries. Representatives unveiled a secret patented process whereby synthetic images appear to come to life (see above).

While animation has been with us for the past 15 years or so, the inherently digital process can be expensive and time consuming. Using a miraculous proprietary technique of "Manual-Linear-Manipulation" (aka "MLM"), Snelgrove reps say literally anything can be created and brought to life in a fraction of the time it takes digital technology.

"Fantastic," said one onlooker, watching the above film clip demonstration, (although she may have been referring to the shrimp cocktail). "It's not quite Crippen," said a man wearing a faded National Lumber t-shirt, "But it's 'Crippenesque'..."

An enthusiastic studio chief (who asked not to be identified) was ecstatic, explaining: "The old way of doing this I gotta get Sir Anthony Hopkins or Sigourney Weaver or Serena Williams or some other seven-figure talent to jump around in some ping-pong wetsuit for nineteen weeks in front of this g**d**** 'green sheet.' Sound expensive? That's just the beginning. Even after that it takes about 600 M.I.T. grads two and half years to 'ray trace' or 'gene splice' the footage just so it can wind up looking like the actor we filmed to begin with! With this new process, they tell me some monkey did this in his spare bedroom in about ten minutes. I'm no Bill Gates, but one jerk versus all that sounds like a bargain to me."

Less optimistic is A. Hugh Jassol, a Wall Street entertainment investment specialist who did not attend the event but acted as if he did:

"Audiences have come to expect more and more spectacular visuals from films these days. The technology available is not only mind boggling, but becoming more and more sophisticated every season. And the audience's expectations go along with that. Take all that away and you'd have to fill that void with original characters and entertaining scripts, which is just something the technology cannot currently provide us with. Maybe it will someday, but for now, it makes sense to keep laying the visuals on with a trowel."

The jury is still out. But the afore mentioned studio chief (who was reportedly fired this morning) was quoted last night as saying: "Count me in. That Anthony Hopkins is a royal pain in the neck anyway."

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

20th Century declared "A Hoax"

In what is certain to be the most stunning mass deception in human history, world leaders met in Bern, Switzerland this morning to publicly confess that the entire 20th century, (and what has already passed as the first decade of the 21st), have been declared "a hoax." While details are still unfolding, the purpose of the hoax was to distract the public from various "real" world affairs with an "alternate reality" of sufficient diversion, as leaders hashed things out. Today's date has been established and verified to be February 12, 1900.

"It was all quite necessary," said an official close to the hoax, who wished to remain anonymous; "I guess it just got out of hand."

Apparently, by 1897 a series of geopolitical tensions, financial crisis and shocking sports betting scandals so rocked the foundations of power that it was deemed essential to distract the mass public in an illusion of epic proportions. Early in 1898 Nikolia Tesla and George Washington Ferris were dispatched to the north and south poles to construct massive electromagnets which would invade human thought. Meanwhile, newspaper publishers, editors & writers across the globe were conscripted into service along with battalions of stage hypnotists to coax the public to imagine an elaborately scripted scenario of parallel events which were wholly fictitious. This "reality", which was penned by authors H.G. Wells and Jules Verne working in tandem, filled the public consciousness with tales of dazzling inventions such as a motor-powered "aeroplane", a "horseless" carriage (also known as a "motor car"), "motion pictures" and something called "The ShamWow!" To balance the "highs", the two scribes then concocted various tragedies such as a 'Great Depression' and several "World Wars" involving unimaginable machinery and weapons to keep the public vacillating between delight and horror. It all now is revealed to have been fabricated out of whole cloth. "It was all supposed to take place in the same amount of actual time that was passing," our source said,"but the boys just got so carried away, the narrative got so dense, we had to make time appear to slow down..." To do so required mass collusion of makers of timepieces and calendars, who were able to make the past 751 days appear to take 112 years.

The repercussions of the instantaneous eradication of so large a chunk of "time" has implications both global and individual which have yet to be sorted out. Various religious and ethnic minorities, for instance, are unsure as to whether their respective troubles are over or have just begun. Individual fortunes have risen and fallen as well. Typical is one James "Jim" Cameron of Malibu, California, who having imagined himself to be something called a "movie mogul," fell into a sputtering rage of obscenity when confronted with the following message from his actual employer (Avery Briggs of Santa Monica Livery): "Please report to the stables post haste with broom in hand, or see yourself replaced by a younger and more agreeable fellow."

Not everyone is confused or angry however. An anonymous apprentice patent clerk in Austria was positively elated at the news. "I feel vindicated," he told friends, adding cryptically that this confirmed his personal theories of time and space. "At first I thought it was mine watch, but then I thought WTF?" he has been quoted. Here in nearby Whittier, California, 67 year old D. Whitney Washburn, a self-described thimble rigger waxes more philosophical: "I see the whole thing as a great weight off. Certain inexplicable things like TWITTER and the popularity of Lucile Ball finally make sense. And cassette tape recorders, I always thought they were fake."

President Barrack Obama looking bewildered but frankly relieved said he received notice from the office of President McKinley that the two would meet as early as tonight to discuss the future of our nation, over a game of WHIST and a pitcher of draft ale. President McKinley, who is visiting friends in Seneca Falls, NY, was unavailable for comment.

More to come.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Beginning the year with odds and ends

A character from a story I am working on. Yes, I know, he owes a lot to 'Droopy.' But being a swine, he will probably not pay it back.

This sketch is from about three years back, but the character is from PINOCCHIO AND THE EMPEROR OF THE NIGHT, which I was animating on way back in 1985.