Tuesday, October 11, 2005


Dexter, Jack Orphaned

(via Cartoon Brew) According to a recent article in Variety (the full text of which is reprinted here), the Orphanage, a San Francisco based visual effects company originally formed by former ILM employees (hence the name... they're "orphans," get it?) is starting up their own animation studio, appropriately named Orphanage Animation Studio. Which is, in itself, interesting but not particularly noteworthy. What does make me sit up and take notice is that they've lured Genndy Tartakovsky away from Cartoon Network to head up the new outfit.

Tartakovsky's Dexter's Laboratory was always amusing, and his Samurai Jack was an often sublime bit of poetry written in balletic violence, but his Clone Wars animated series was probably the best the franchise has ever been, the original features included. With that in mind, the following tidbit was welcome news:
"After 14 years in TV, I was burned out and wanted to express longer stories and experience them with an audience," Tartakovsky said of the new venture. "We'll do family comedies, but we also really want to push action-adventure beyond where it has been."
One of the most refreshing things about last year's The Incredibles was that, at its base, it was a terrific, no-apologies-needed-or-offered straight-ahead action film, that just happened to have a lot of laughs and moments of familial sentiment mixed in. Animation is, as so many have pointed out but which so many American viewers have yet to grasp, a medium and not a genre. Everything animated, whether with computers or by hand, need not have songs, cute characters, and storylines that only appeal to the youngest possible members of the audience.

I look forward with eager anticipation to seeing what sort of features Tartakovsky produces, with the resources of a well-funded studio at his back. Could be interesting...

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