Thursday, June 28, 2012

Tickets Now On Sale For DreamWorks' How To Train Your Dragon: Live Spectacular


The stage version of Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois' How To Train Your Dragon has finally reached the USA, and tickets are selling out fast. Click here to view a 3-minute Today Show puff-piece that will inspire you to click here to spend hundreds of dollars on back-of-the-stadium balcony seats. Do I sound bitter, or just poor? Both? Well, here's some cheerier news: If you use the code MOM in the 'Mom Bloggers Discount Offer' box, you'll get 25% off certain seats. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

In Lieu of News...a Contest!


Up for grabs this week is a brand new DVD/Blu-Ray combo pack of Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois' How To Train Your Dragon. Already own it? Enter anyway. If you win, you can always sell it for drug money donate it to a local charity.

To enter, all you have to do is type something -- ANYTHING -- in the comments section below. The winner will be picked at random on Friday, June 29. Only one entry per person. Note: COMMENTS CAN NOT BE ANONYMOUS, or I will have no way of contacting you to tell you that you've won and collect your mailing address and generally brighten your otherwise awful day.

Good luck!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Happy 10th Birthday, Lilo & Stitch!

It was on this day, ten years ago, that Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois' animated masterpiece, Lilo & Stitch, landed in movie theaters. Although it was easily one of the more...um, unorthodox animated films that Disney had released, it was an immediate hit with critics and audiences alike. Adorable and unforgettable, Stitch quickly joined the stable of go-to characters for Disney's many marketing and merchandising needs. Hell, they even hastily re-themed a Tomorrowland ride in order to make his presence stronger in the parks!

In the ensuing decade, Lilo & Stitch has lost none of its magic. The sarcastic yet sentimental script still packs a wallop. The character designs look as fresh now as they first did. The voice work never fails to feel both hilarious and heartfelt. The energy and artistry of the animation (care of Andreas Deja and Alex Kupershmidt, among many, many others) is still a wonder to watch, and the gorgeous watercolor backgrounds have yet to be topped via CGI. While rumor has it that John Lasseter hates L&S, methinks Walt would've loved it. After all, with the lion's share of Disney's modern animated flicks taking their cues from Snow White and Cinderella, this is the only one to blend the tenderness of Dumbo with the irascible insanity of the original Mickey Mouse shorts.

On a more navel-gazing note, Lilo & Stitch helped me immeasurably in a time of tragedy. When my pops killed himself, leaving my kid sister and I as late-in-life orphans, L&S's repeated mantra of 'ohana' ("Ohana means family, and family means nobody gets left behind...or forgotten.") and its focus on keeping a fractured family together (as well as being open to adding new members to it), hit me like an uncut speed-ball of spiritual strength and emotional stamina. While it would be hyperbolic to say that I wouldn't have survived the experience without Lilo & Stitch, it would be equally untrue to say that it did not help. A lot.

NEWS FLASH: If it was not already achingly apparent, Lilo & Stitch was the film that inspired the Chris Sanders fandom which wrought this blog. (That's a plus or a minus depending entirely upon your perspective.) Through this blog, I've been lucky enough to meet other folks with similar stories to mine. Some first saw the film ten years ago, upon its initial release. Others didn't find it 'til a year or two ago. Still, we all have one thing in common: Lilo & Stitch changed our lives forever and for the better. And honestly, isn't that the ultimate testament to any piece of art's continued relevance?

Happy 10th birthday, Lilo & Stitch! And thanks a million, Chris and Dean!

Five more L&S retrospectives:

1. Alex Sferrazza's look back at Lilo & Stitch
2. Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois' 2009 interview re: L&S
3. Lilo & Stitch producer Clark Spencer remembers the film
4. The Entertainment Nut's super-smart, irrefutably informative remembrance.
5. Some shameless, aimless blogger rambles on for waaay too long about their undying love of L&S and how it's inspired them to unofficially hype some other film that's not even going to be released for at least another year. Seriously, you can probably skip this one.

A few choice quotes:

Lilo (pulling a doll out of her backpack): This is Scrump. I made her. But her head is too big, so I pretended that a bug laid eggs in her ear, and she's upset because she has only a few more days to...

Lilo: We're a broken family, aren't we?
Nani: No. Maybe a little. Maybe a lot. I shouldn't have yelled at you.
Lilo: We're sisters. It's our job.
Nani: Yeah, well, from now on...
Lilo: I like you better as a sister than a mom.

Lilo (while creating voodoo dolls of her playmates): My friends need to be punished.

Pleakley: Look! A mosquito has chosen me as her perch. She's so beautiful. Look, another one! And another one! Why, it's a whole flock! They like me! They're nuzzling my flesh with their noses! Now they're... they're... Aaaaaaaah!

Lilo: You came back.
Stitch: Nobody gets left behind.

Stitch: This is my family. I found it all on my own. It's little, and broken, but still good. Yeah - still good.

Some of my favorite scenes from the film:

The beautiful opening credits sequence:



The Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride scene:

Thursday, June 14, 2012

New Croods & Dragons Posters Released












For more than 100 years, Las Vegas was America's premier destination for legalized prostitution. Then a 1971 law squashed Sin City's sex trade, unwittingly opening the door to an even ickier industry -- corporate whoring. Cue the Licensing Expo 2012. The Expo is sorta like a red light district for major movie studios. It's where they go to show off their upcoming films, pimping out the most promising pictures to toy makers and t-shirt companies looking to blow their wads on something new and different.

ComingSoon.net recently braved this modern day Madison Avenue and Gomorra, bringing back dozens of photos. Posted above are the two I'm most excited about. While the new Croods poster is only slightly different than the last teaser that DreamWorks leaked, the Dragons poster is the first official image from the much-anticipated sequel.

To see more of the movie posters on display at the Licensing Expo 2012, head on over to ComingSoon.net.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

In Lieu of News...LINKS!

Do you yearn for more Chris Sanders-related goodness than this beleaguered blog can possibly provide? Then head on over to FuckYeahChrisSanders! It features hundreds of Sanders-centric film stills, gifs, convention sketches and unlicensed artistic tributes.

Daniel Caylor, creator of OnAnimation.com, is giving away a copy of Chris Sanders' Sketchbook 2. To enter, all you have to do is go here and 'Like' the article on Facebook. I've already copped a copy of this cartoon packed paperback, and let me tell you, it's well worth the two clicks.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Fan Art Friday



Guess who's back with yet another seemingly self-serving piece of Croods-themed fan art? Me! Now to tend to these damned paper cuts...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Awaiting The Croods: Great Expectations


Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace

The series finale of LOST

Losing my virginity

These are just three examples of times when my unbridled expectations left me feeling deeply disappointed. I'm sure you have a few of your own. Me? I've got MILLIONS. I think that it may have to do with me being a bit obsessive. My pops was a manic-depressive, so the obsessive gene is clearly within me. It could also be that I'm a li'l too geeky for my own good. I feel the nerdy need to learn absolutely everything I can about the stuff that I'm enamored with. Oh, and then there's the elation I experience while anxiously awaiting something. It's sorta like the sensation you get while waiting for a doctor to give you a shot, only positive, and without all the stabbies. I'm sure endorphins and adrenaline play a part, but for the sake of stupidity, let's just call it a 'high.'

Huh.

I guess that makes me a junkie.