Jun 26, 2007

Frederator Goes Indy - Among First Projects: "Samurai Jack" Film

In light of the sad, tragic events that occurred over the weekend involving one of my favorite wrestlers of all time, I'm just glad to read something good to lighten the mood.

Scratch that, not something good. Something GREAT!

According to Variety, Fred Seibert (creator of the MTV logo, the architect of the imaging and packaging Nickelodeon uses to this day, former president of Hanna-Barbera, founder of Frederator Studios, and the most underappreciated guy in the animation industry today) and a pair of entertainment executives announced plans to launch a new independent animation movie company, Frederator Films.

Their mission is a great one: To create 2D and genre-based animated films aimed towards young men with a low, but workable budget.

Here's the text (caution - Varietyspeak is in abundance in this piece):

A trio of toon veterans are launching Frederator Films as an indie feature film company with a mission to produce 2-D animated genre movies budgeted below $20 million.

Fred Seibert's partnered with Kevin Kolde and Eric Gardner, with all three acting as producers on the projects. Seibert's the former president of Hanna-Barbera and longtime producer via Frederator Studios, which debuted a decade ago with "Oh Yeah! Cartoons" for Cartoon Network; that show spun off "Cow & Chicken," "Powerpuff Girls" and "Dexter's Laboratory," and Frederator followed with "The Fairly OddParents," "ChalkZone" and "My Life as a Teenage Robot" for Nickelodeon.

Kolde ran Spumco, the banner of John Kricfalusi ("Ren & Stimpy"), for more than a decade, while Gardner is the topper at Panacea Entertainment, a talent management and production company with clients including Donny Osmond, Richard Belzer, Paul Shaffer, the Sex Pistols, Elvira and members of the Rolling Stones.

Seibert told Daily Variety that the new banner can take advantage of 21st century technology to develop offbeat content into feature films.

"Fred is the master at identifying voids in the marketplace and filling them with paradigm-shifting content," Gardner said. "There has been a dearth of both 2-D and genre animated feature product, which Frederator Films will be rectifying." Pics will be aimed at young males.

First projects from the shingle:

"Samurai Jack," a feature version of the Cartoon Network skein. The creator, Genndy Tartakovsky, is attached to write and direct.

"The Neverhood," a claymation feature based on the DreamWorks videogame of the same name. Doug TenNapel, who created the game, is aboard to write and direct.

"The Seven Deadly Sins," a hip-hop project with Don King hired as the first voice actor.

Yes, your eyes did not deceive you. Frederator's making a Samurai Jack animated movie. Let me be the first to say THANK YOU FREDERATOR! One of the greatest animated series of all time always had a place in my heart, and I'm glad to see it at least resuming with Genndy back at the helm of his creation in the form where it was first developed instead of being live-action. Ugh. I'm surprised that they're developing a Neverhood movie. I've always been a fan of Doug TenNapel's works (Earthworm Jim, Project G.ee.K.e.R., and Catscratch). Not his politics, mind you, just his works, which is why I'm looking forward to a return to the Neverhood. I'm cautiously curious about Seven Deadly Sins mostly because of the casting of the most crooked boxing promoter I've ever seen, but I'm sure he's the biggest part of the movie.

Still, talent drives this brand, and I look forward to see what Frederator Films has to offer in the years ahead.


Melon which rhymes with said...

Awesome.....CN must have gotten a good kick in the nuts finally.

Tenapel does have very conservative views.
I wonder if I ever do meet him can I talk to him without being afraid lol.

Happy Dance!

Emperor Fred said...

In all my excitement about this news, it didn't occur to me until now that Aku will have to be recast!!

Oh well, it's still fantastic news. Fred Seibert is my hero.

Melon which rhymes with said...

Maybe the same person doing Mako's role in Avatar will be cast?

Rest in peace Mako!

Scripter said...

Im pretty sure the guy doing Mako's role on avatar would have to be the new Aku. Its the only choice