Thursday, January 31, 2013

Chris Sanders On Storyboarding


Via Chris Sanders' website:

If you are inclined to be a board artist there are some things to make note of.  I learned a few things from Disney board artist Burny Mattinson that help the legibility of these panels.  Burny taught me to fade background lines away when they collide with a character – this helps the character read against the background, boosting the clarity and keeping the image from being too busy.  When the character is actually in contact with something, like the tiger’s tail, then its okay to have all the lines connect.

The other trick Burny would use is shading places and elements you need to pay attention to.  You may have noticed that on the 2nd and 3rd drawings in the Eep VS Plant series.  I shaded the plant on the 2nd drawing, and Eep’s elbow and the plant’s head in the 3rd drawing, so they read quickly when the series is digitized and placed in the story reel.  Drawing 15 is also shaded – Eep’s foot and the plant face are what you need to see, so they are shaded.  Your eye will always travel to the point of highest contrast.

So simple...so obvious...and yet still a revelation to me. I wonder, do you think Sanders' second tip would work in comics? My first thought was that the reader would assume the artist was just being lazy. But then I thought of the comics of Eddie Campbell (From Hell, Alec: The King Canute Crowd). Campbell often does this same sorta thing with the bare minimum backgrounds (or foregrounds, depending), and his stuff NEVER looks lazy or half-assed. Dude's one of the all-time greats!

Hmn... definitely something to chew on.

3 Free Facebook Timeline Photos...Pt. 6


No offense, but your portal to pretend popularity is looking a little peaked lately. Its color is off, and it's beginning to show its age. Perhaps it's time you gave it that much needed Facebook-lift?

Don't worry, the procedure is painless. Heck, you won't even have to use any sick days to hide the swelling or bruising. Best of all, it's free! All you have to do is follow the seven simple steps below, and voilà! -- your phony 'Friends' count just doubled.

Instructions:
1. Click the photo you’d like to use for your Cover photo
2. Right click the photo and choose “Save Image As…”
3. Go to your Facebook Profile
4. Click “Add A Cover/Change Cover”
5. Choose “Upload Photo…”
6. Click “Browse” and select your Cover
7. Click “Open”

Related: 3 Free Facebook Timeline Photos...Pt. 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Emma Stone Intros The Croods



Back in December, DreamWorks held a press conference to announce their upcoming films and show some sneak peeks. The films featured were Turbo, Mr. Peabody & Sherman and some little CG thing called The Croods (sp?). This is the Emma Stone intro that played before the Croods clips. Enjoy!

Thanks to Emma Stone Us for the heads-up.
 
Related: Ryan Reynolds & Emma Stone Talk The Croods

Croods Comics #4





Crave more Croods comics? Click here!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chris Sanders On The Horse/Dog Hybrid


Via Chris Sanders' website:

You won't see this tiny horse [in the finished film]. He was dropped from the film only after he was built and rigged, and performed wonderfully in the talented hands of James Baxter, who took him through his paces. It is one of those hard choices you have to make during the development of one of these movies, and dropping the pony wasn’t an easy decision. [...] At the time of this boarding he was one of the things the Croods met on their prehistoric road trip. The pony took a shine to Grug, despite the fact that Grug wanted nothing to do with him. Grug was always chasing him away, only to have the pony return and linger just out of arm’s reach. In the Croods world, all animals are to be avoided – even the smallish ones would gladly trip you and bite you. So a friendly animal just didn’t make sense to Grug. 

I liked that the pony picked out the one Crood that was least likely to accept him. The pony saw something in Grug he liked and was quietly devoted to him, following him everywhere. There was a hopeless, heartbreaking quality to the relationship that I liked.

To read the complete post, click here.

Related: My Dream Trip To DreamWorks: James Baxter -- The Pencil Behind Belle!

Croods Comic Writer Answers All My Questions

What a pleasant surprise THIS was! Georgia Ball -- creator of the webcomic Scooter and Ferret and writer of Ape Comics' Strawberry Shortcake -- recently happened across my blog post about the Croods prequel comic. Ball not only reprinted bits of it on her Tumblr, she answered every single question I had regarding the project!

From Ball's Tumblr, Ask Maridee:

Croods Prequel Comic

I was waiting until I saw a Facebook announcement from Ape, but as it turns out the word has been in other places, there will be a Croods prequel comic book coming soon and one of my stories is in it.

See this quote from a Croods blog (wow there’s a Croods blog):
I don’t know which part of that press release I’m more excited about. A Croods prequel comic book, or the fact that some marketing firm got a green light on the term ‘prehysterical.’ No matter. I’ll take ‘em both.
I really liked seeing this question:
croodsCOMICbook
A couple of quick questions, though. If the plot of The Croods hinges on the fact that the family has never left their cave, does that mean that the prequel will take place entirely within its stony confines? Are kids really going want to read 125 pages of My Campfire With Andre? Or will the prequel be the story of how the Croods’ first found their cave, and why Grug decided to lock them all inside? A “prehysterical” re-telling of  The Shining, perhaps?
Yes we really did have to deal with that question. It was the first question I asked when I read the script. But the Croods do have to leave their caves sometimes to hunt, so it’s not spoiling too much to say we did get to take them out of the cave. A little.
The confusing part of the solicitation is that my name is in it, because my story is not very long and definitely not the lead… Nathan Watson is my artist though:
Ape Entertainment proudly presents the official prequel to Dreamworks’ upcoming blockbuster family film, The Croods! Join Grug, Ugga, Eep, Thunk, Gran and a host of forgotten prehistoric creatures in one family’s adventures before their adventure of a lifetime! Featuring stories by Georgia Ball (Strawberry Shortcake) and art by Nathan Watson (Toy Story), this is one prehysterical tale you won’t want to miss!
But it is included and I’m looking forward to the release!

Thanks so much for the answers, Georgia! Folks interested in learning more about Ms. Ball and her work should check out her Tumblr, her portfolio, the Scooter and Ferret strips and Ape Comics' page for Strawberry Shortcake. Homegirl is PROLIFIC.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Chris Sanders' Croods Storyboards: Animated!



I can't fault those folks who long for a Croods done completely in the 'Sanders style.' It would be wonderful.

Beautiful New Croods Poster Immediately Erases All Memories of Last Week's Misfire


This new Croods poster? LOVELY. For those keeping score at home, this brings the great vs. groan count to an even 3/3. (Great, great, great. Groan, groan, groan.) Not counting Mondo exclusives or fan made mock-ups, that's a MUCH better ratio than most modern movies manage.

C'mon DW -- one more poster like this and you've tipped the scales!

Marching Band Records Music for The Croods


On January 16, The Spirit of Troy -- the self-proclaimed "Greatest Marching Band in the History of the Universe" -- joined composer Alan Silvestri and directors Chris Sanders and Kirk De Micco to record some music for The Croods. Was it music for the score? Was it music for a trailer? Will this marching band be accompanying the Croods parade float in an upcoming, as-yet-unnamed parade? Frankly, I have no idea. And no one's talking. It's amazing what passes for news around here, eh?

Photo swiped from The Spirit of Troy's Facebook page. 

The First Wave of Croods Toys is Now Available


The first six Croods toys are now on sale, and...gosh, how do I say this nicely? Well, they're not choking hazards. That's a plus! And the toxic chemicals used in their manufacture were kept to legal, non-lethal doses. Good on you, Mattel!

Okay, so maybe I'm being a bit unfair. These toys are clearly intended for the li'l ones. (Aged 36 months - 7 years, to be exact.) I guess it only makes sense that simplicity and durability would trump detail and design. Still, as The Croods' unofficial, unpaid, hype-man and lobbyist, I can’t help but feel a little disappointed. I was hoping that the first Croods toy would be a work of wonder, a must-have collectible, something that folks of all ages would trample over family and friends to purchase. The fact that you are still sitting here reading this instead of clicking away to BUY NOW only proves that this is not the case.

That said, should my Mishka decide to decorate my March birthday cake with the figures from the Croodaceous Creature Pack (hint! hint!), I'll lick the frosting off each and every one of 'em. ("Non-lethal doses." That's been tested, right?)

One VERY COOL thing about these toys' release? NEW NAMES! The five critters in the Creature Pack (top row) are the Macawnivore, Bearowl, Jackrobat, Crocpup and Liyote. The two critters in the Hero Packs (bottom row) are the Ramu and the Punch Monkey. I don't know about you, but nerdy minutia like that always brings a smile to my sourpuss.

To order these toys, click here and here.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Fan Art Friday


This is one my favorite pieces of Croods fan art yet! Mixing the unpretentious aesthetics of folk art with the innocence and melancholy of a Margaret Keane painting, redmeadows-and-guardians's portrait of Belt is a work of wide-eyed beauty. It's simultaneously silly and somber, goofy and gloomy. Just look at those big green eyes and that pouty bottom lip. Now try and tell me you don't feel anything.

I love it. I want it. And I know just the spot in my apartment where I'd hang it.

To view more of redmeadows-and-guardians' artwork, click here.

Go, Look: Chris Sanders' Critter Sketches


So long as Chris Sanders keeps posting his sketches, I'm gonna keep linking to 'em. Today's treasure trove is SEVENTEEN sketches of the Croods' critters. To say that they're absolutely adorable would be both obvious and an understatement. So instead, I'll just point my finger in his website's direction and say, "GO!"

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Croods Crew: Dave Hardin

After almost a decade in the animation biz, Dave Hardin now sits near the top of the heap, lording it over the little people as one of the Senior Animators on The Croods. How did he attain this position of power, you ask? Well, ever since I took that tour of DreamWorks, I've been dutifully deleting any and all references to the murder and mayhem that goes on behind the studio gates. But suffice it to say, Dave Hardin left a long trail of bodies in his wa--

What's that?

No, no, no. OF COURSE I know that Dave Hardin is not a murderer. Or a man of mayhem. Nor has he left a long trail of bodies in his wake. (At least, I hope not.) No, I was just using a little 'creative license' to try and rope in the readers. I'm well aware that Hardin worked his way up the ranks the old fashioned way, first graduating from The College for Creative Studies, then animating on such films as Open Season and Boog & Elliot's Midnight Bun Run, and then on Surf's Up -- the film that garnered him a 2008 Annie Award nomination and his current gig at DreamWorks. But seriously, if I just went ahead and listed all of that, who's gonna want to read it? Kids today don't want to hear about hard work and education. They want over-night sensations and sensationalistic sleaze. Trust me on this, okay? I'm an unpaid, unofficial blogger. That pretty much makes me an expert on everything.

I'll tell you what. Read the rest of this profile piece. If -- AT THE END -- you still have any lingering questions or concerns, I'll be more than happy to take your suggestions into consideration. We cool? Okay, then. Paragraph two:

Dave Hardin is a master manipulator of CG characters AND human emotions. This treacherous blend of tech savvy and sociopathic tendencies can be found in virtually ALL Senior Animators working in today's cutthroat corporate cartoon indus--

What?!

No, I do NOT think I am being a tad overly-dramatic. What I was trying to say -- albeit with a pinch of pizazz -- was that Hardin's job as Senior Animator requires him to not only be a top tier animator, but also a people person, able to delegate responsibility and act as a mentor to the Junior Animators working with him. That was pretty obvious, if you ask me.


Now, as I was saying...

Dave Hardin and a CIA assassin have one very dangerous trait in common. Their outwardly innocent appearance is just a front for the chameleon-like personality and mercurial skill-set they hide within. This diabolical duplicity--

Seriously? Already? That was what, two and a half sentences? One of 'em was a run-on, I'll grant you that. But if you're going to interrupt me every time I try to compliment the man, it's gonna start to sound a little back-handed. I mean, would you rather I just cut-and-pasted the portion of Hardin's interview with his alma mater where he described the wide variety of animation styles he's worked in by saying:

All of the animated movies I’ve worked on so far have been completely different from each other. Open Season was very cartoony with exaggerated squash/stretch. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs had a UPA style animation to it, very rubbery arms and static poses held throughout a shot. If a character walked across the room, the feet and legs might be the only things moving, while the upper body never changed position. I Am Legend, Alice in Wonderland and Speed Racer were all more based in a realistic style of animation, where gravity and weight wasn't exaggerated so it would look believable when composited next to the live action actors.

Yeah, and then I'd probably have to shell out some sort of expensive copyright fee for the 'privilege.' No, thanks. I think I'll do this my way. Now where was I?

Oh, yeah.


Nothing delights Dave Hardin more than watching his victims' reactions. He RELISHES it. If, on some dark and stormy night, you happen to encounter Dave Hardin in the back of a dimly lit bar, you may want to curry his favor by asking him to tell you the story of 'The Little Girl on the Plane.' It will send shivers down your--

What do you mean, "misleading"?! I have bold-print quotes to back all of this up. Oh, you want to see them? Fine. Here:

I love watching people react to movies I’ve worked on -- seeing them laugh or get emotional during shots that I animated; that really is the biggest payoff.

And...

Once on flight back to Michigan, a woman and her daughter were watching Open Season on a DVD player next to me. I got so excited because when I told the mom that I animated on that movie, she smiled and said that it was her daughter’s favorite film. She said that she’s watched it over 100 times!

Shivers, right? Shivers of sweetness. Now I think that you owe me an apology. No? Well, how about you just sit tight while I try and finish this thing, then?


They say an assassin never forgets his first kill. A similar thing can be said for some CG animators. Hardin originally enrolled in The College for Creative Studies intending to enter the field of film special effects. One of his first assignments was to animate "a very simple object within a short story." That was all it took. To hear Hardin tell it, he took to animation like a junkie to the Mexican Brown Horse.

No, make that, 'the China White.' No -- 'Mr. Brownstone.' Howzabout, 'the Black Stuff'? Ooh, so many colorful choices!

"I was hooked after that," said Hardin. "By animating this very simple object, I was able to see that it had a personality and people could relate to it. Things just snowballed soon after. I was doing walk cycles, lip sync and short films with other classmates. I am really glad that I am doing character animation now because the art of bringing something to life is very rewarding."

If I may be permitted to interrupt myself here, I've gotta admit, I'm pleasantly surprised at your new found restraint. You've let me type two whole paragraphs (and one editorial interjection!) without a single complaint. Perhaps I'm winning you over. Perhaps you've come around to my way of thinking. Perhaps you finally see the method to my--

Oh, the bathroom? Well, it's très gauche to share such things publicly. Now zip your lips while I bring this bad boy home.

Despite his many artistic and financial successes, Hardin is haunted by a host of inner-demons. His self-doubt is relentless, as is his insatiable need to animate better, faster, more. But instead of allowing the weight of his own expectations to crush him, Hardin uses it to make himself stronger. This metaphorical weight is the metaphorical fire that metaphorically tempers his metaphorical sword. Heaven help the underling or overseer who dares stand in his--

AND WE WERE SO CLOSE! That was it! The end! The parting words of wisdom and encouragement! The answer to every aspiring animator's first question at an open Q&A: 'How do I do what you do?' And you had to go and--

You think I should just cut-and-paste Hardin's actual advice? Alright, I'll do it. Not because you're right, mind you. But because I want to prove to you how amazingly amenable I can be. Unlike SOME PEOPLE. Anyway, take it away, Dave.

I tend to be critical of my work. I always watch my shots and say, "Oh, I could have pushed that expression more'" or "I could have made that emotional moment last longer." I think that is what makes a good animator -- being able to critique your own work and know the difference between something that looks good and bad. Otherwise you'll never improve. You have to be hard on yourself and want to impress people.

Great advice, and pretty much EXACTLY what I'd said above. Still, this isn't about me. It's about Dave Hardin. So let's close this out with a 4 1/2 minute highlight reel of Hardin's hard work. He's clearly adept at the big action stuff, but keep an eye out for smaller gestures and facial expressions. Hardin's got a real gift for those.



NOTE: All quotes from this post were lifted from an interview Hardin did with The College for Creative Studies. To read the full interview, click here.

Related:
Croods Crew: Jamaal Bradley
Croods Crew: Jennifer Harlow
Croods Crew: Louis del Carmen
Croods Crew: Christophe Lautrette

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The 2nd TV Spot Is Now Online!

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

It's similar to the first TV spot, only with new narration and a few less jokes. Ladies and gentlemen, the 2nd TV spot.

A Quick Croods Comic...by ME!


For more (better?) Croods comics, click here and here.

Chris Sanders Is Blogging Again



Chris Sanders is bunked out at the Skywalker Ranch, finishing the final sound mix for The Croods. This has given him a bit of free time, which he's using to catch up on his biking and blogging. (Not simultaneously. I don't think.) The biking sounds miserable ("On the weekend I punish myself by going into San Francisco and riding up hills till I barf"), but Sanders seems to enjoy it. More to my lethargic liking is his return to blogging. On Tuesday, Sanders posted storyboards for two scenes that were cut from The Croods. Even better? He drew all of the storyboards himself!

Click here and here for eye candy.

Thanks to Commenter Bob for the heads-up.

Monday, January 21, 2013

New Poster!


A new poster has arrived, and this one features the FRONT of the Croods! Bursting with color and smiles and awkwardly placed critters, this hyper-happy image will surely help to capitalize on the interest generated by last week's pitch-perfect TV ad.

While I'm not the biggest fan of the blink-and-it's-irrelevant headline, I am DELIGHTED that the all-out advertising assault for The Croods has finally begun.

Storyboard, Anyone?


Via DreamWorks story artist Ryan Savas' blog:

I storyboarded on this for about a year and a half.  I can't believe it's going to be out in theaters soon! Here's a storyboard panel from a scene I worked on in the trailer...

I love Savas' loose, yet perfectly placed drawing style. Take a look at that one line on Guy's right side. It starts way up at his shoulder and doesn't end 'til it hits his heel. ONE LINE! And it's arguably the anchor of the character's pose and personality!

Savas' take on Eep is even more impressive. What a great and goofy reaction to the discovery of shoes! Out of context, it looks like a cross between the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz and the zombies in Micheal Jackson's Thriller video. In context, it provided the single biggest laugh in the second trailer.

Please, Savas, POST MORE!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Updated Croods Website Features New Info & Pics


Quick! Head on over to the new and improved OFFICIAL website for The Croods! They've not only redecorated, they've expanded! In addition to the teaser and the trailer, they've got character profiles for all of cast (including Belt!), a full-screen version of the motion poster (still awesome!), the first head-to-claw shot of the saber-tooth tiger (toy NOW, please!), and a set of super-cool 2D Croods caricatures (direct-to-DVD sequels should be done in THIS style!).

Still, nothing beats this blog's musty, mustard-colored charm, eh?

EH?!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Fan Art Friday


The pretty pictures keep pouring in! Today's fan art -- and this site's first 'traditional' pencil sketch -- is from Zuider Zee (a.k.a. BecDeCorbin). I . AM. IMPRESSED. Zuider managed to keep Eep's inherent cartooniness in tact while adding a bit of 'real life' to her. Her eyes, cheeks and the area where her neck meets her chest, in particular, really make this sketch come alive. And the way Zuider kept Eep's hand almost entirely white gives the whole thing a magical, almost 3D feel.

Remember that video for A-ha's Take On Me, the one where the comic book comes to life and sucks the girl reading it inside? It looks like Eep is about to pull the viewer into her own 80s pop promo.

To view more of Zuider Zee's art, click here.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Music From The Trailers -- Revealed!

You've watched the trailers. You've heard the music cues. Now hear the songs in their entirety!

First up, the first trailer. The opening music here is a 35 second excerpt of Ocean Dreams by Jonathan Geer. While I could not find a YouTube video for this song (bad news), I did locate Geer's website, and he was kind enough to provide me with an MP3 of it (good news). Unfortunately, blogger does not easily allow MP3s to be posted (bad news), but Tumblr does (good news). So, please -- go to our Tumblr to hear this track! While you're out and about, check Square Enix Music Online's interview with Geere. In it, Geer is repeatedly referred to as "one of indie game music's rising stars." What a coincidence! I'm one of movie blogging's aimlessly drifting asteroids!

Fading in at the 1:27 mark is the gorgeous Sinking Friendships from Sigur Rós' lead singer, Jónsi. Fans of Chris Sanders may recognize Jónsi as the fella behind Sticks & Stones, the song that plays over the end credits of How To Train Your Dragon. But did you know that Dean DeBlois -- co-director of How To Train Your Dragon and Lilo & Stitch -- directed the Sigur Rós tour documentary, Heima? Synergy!

Sinking Friendships originally appeared on Jónsi's debut solo album, Go.



The rousing instrumental score that appears around 2:25 is Lexicon by Mark Petrie. Talk about motivational! A quick scan of this song's YouTube comments reveals it to be a favorite at gymnastics competitions. Perhaps Eep practices her primitive parkour to this?

(Doctor's Warning: One listen to Lexicon equals two Adderall.)



Next up, the the second trailer. The acoustic strumming that kicks off this trailer is lifted from the opening of Crystal Fighter's pretty and propulsive Plage. I won;t lie. I had a lot of trouble tracking this one down. Then, like a ray of light in the darkness, commenter zosoph gifted me with all of the info. Thanks, zosoph!



The summer-sounding pop song that kicks in at roughly 1:35 is Follow the Sun by Evermore. Personally, it's not my cuppa. That said, every time I saw this trailer play in the theater, it was the arrival of THIS SONG that really seemed to energize the audience. Maybe I'm just jaded.

This untiringly upbeat little ditty first appeared on Evermore's fifth album, Follow the Sun.



In the international version of the second trailer, Follow the Sun was inexplicably replaced with On Top of the World by Imagine Dragons. Much like Follow the Sun, On Top of the World is a candy-coated earworm hellbent on giving you laughlines and laryngitis with its relentless positivity and catchy-as-the-flu chorus. Three plays in, and my face hurts from trying not to smile. Dammit, why am I even trying to resist?!

On Top of the World first graced the world via Imagine Dragons's Continued Silence EP, then in the video game, Fifa Soccer 2013



This week's 30 second TV spot kept it simple. One song. Richard Strauss' Also Sprach Zarathustra. Depending on your age and interests, you may know this as the song that opened Kubrick's 2001, the music that Elvis used as his intro for his Aloha From Hawaii concert, or the Buzz Lightyear bit from Toy Story 2. Strong, long and seemingly never-ending, I'm surprised Viagra never used this in an advert.



There are still a few musical cues that I cannot identify. The acoustic guitar piece that opens both versions of the second trailer, for instance. Does anyone know who did this? If so, please drop me a note in the comments section. You will be paid in praise!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Want To Win A Croods Movie Poster?


You can!

Maybe.

But only if your name is the name drawn completely at random by an unbiased, unfeeling, uncaring computer that is not easily swayed by the animated gifs, flirty emoticons or an excessive usage of exclamation marks.

To enter, simply SAY SOMETHING NICE IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.

At 11:59 pm E.S.T. on January 23, I'll paste all of the commenters into excel and randomize the list to pick a winner. I'll send the winner an email requesting their name and mailing address, so your comment must be linked to a real email address if you want to win.

Good luck!

NOTE: THIS CONTEST HAS ENDED.

Monday, January 14, 2013

It's The New Croods TV Spot!

 
It made its television premier last night during the NFL playoffs. Now it's online and knocking 'em dead. IT'S THE NEW CROODS TV SPOT! This one features the funny, the family AND the end of the world -- all in just 32 seconds!

Well done, DreamWorks. It's a GREAT spot.

Croods Cosplay from the Vietnamese Vocal Cast!


Vietnamese pop stars Vân Trang and Issac recently dabbled in a bit of Croods cosplay to promote their country's voice casting as Eep and Guy. Looking at these photos, one question immediately sprang to mind:

When are Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds and Nic Cage posing for a similar set of pics?

Photos courtesy of xalo.vn

Friday, January 11, 2013

Fan Art Friday


Today's first piece of fan art is from Sarah. Let me just get this out of the way up front: The look on the saber-tooth tiger's face is TO DIE FOR. It's so cute! The swirling, saturated blues are something else, too, don't you think? They really give the impression of a thick, furry pelt.

I really like how Sarah re-imagined the film's cartoon critters as their real world counterparts. This is just how they'd look in a 90s Disney cartoon! That piranha/parrot, in particular, reminds me of a character from another film Chris Sanders worked on -- The Lion King's Zazu. Wonderful!

To view more of Sarah's art, click here.


This next piece of fan art comes courtesy of Queesting. This one is so full of energy, so full of personality...you can almost FEEL the excitement emanating off of Eep! The facial expression Queesting gave Eep is FANTASTIC. It's hilarious, yet life-or-death -- quite a complicated combo of conflicting emotions!

I also love the pose. Queesting has perfectly captured Eep's wild and adventurous spirit. This is clearly the same Eep we've seen scaling cliffs, fleeing feathered monsters and freaking out over her first pair of shoes. In fact, if someone had told me that this was from a storyboard used during production, I'd have totally believed 'em.

To view more of Queesting's art, click here.

Update: In a recent deviantART exchange with Queesting, she revealed that she'll be dressing up as Eep for an upcoming convention. Croods cosplay -- how cool is that?!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

LA Times Pens Pean To Eep

Swiped whole from The LA Times:

‘Croods’ sneak peek: Emma Stone heroine more parkour than pinup

From Betty Boop to the Little Mermaid, young female characters in animation nearly always share the same silhouette — an exaggerated hourglass shape. But Eep, the prehistoric teenager voiced by Emma Stone in the Dreamworks Animation movie “The Croods,” sports a decidedly different physique.

More Olympian than pinup, Eep has the shoulders of a swimmer, the legs of a gymnast and the strength and speed to survive the apocalypse — or at least some major continent shifting.


The Crood family — including Eep’s dad, Grug (Nicolas Cage), mom, Ugga (Catherine Keener), and brother, Thunk (Clark Duke) — live in a fictional time period called the “Croodaceous Era,” when the Earth is populated by exotic, dangerous creatures and the most useful animal instinct is fear. It’s when Eep meets Guy (Ryan Reynolds), a lanky loner from a more highly evolved, Homo sapien-like species, that the Croods’ cozy, primitive world gets disrupted.

“The Croods,” which opens March 22, resides tonally somewhere on the caveman continuum between the absurdity of “The Flinstones” — with its bird beak record player and woolly mammoth shower head — and the realism of the 1981 Paleolithic drama “Quest for Fire.”


“We’ve all seen the knuckle-dragging guys with clubs,” said Kirk DeMicco, who wrote and directed “The Croods” with “How to Train Your Dragon” writer-director Chris Sanders. “The big idea was to create a world where we could refresh everybody’s idea of what a caveman movie could look like, ’cause usually it’s just rocks and caves. We wanted to reinvent their physicality and the world they’re living in.”

In the case of Eep and Guy, their forms are dictated by their functions. She’s a densely muscled hunter who chases down her family’s dinner, climbing and scrambling across the landscape like a parkour runner. Guy, on the other hand, is wild-haired, lean and sinewy, with some useful accessories like a pet sloth that doubles as a belt and a pair of what can only be described as prehistoric Ugg boots.


“To Eep, Guy is the weight of a Barbie doll,” Sanders said. “Eep is unmistakably different from any other animated girl. And she’s really pretty for a caveman.”

– Rebecca Keegan


Please click this link at least once! Give the writer her click-throughs!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Ay Dios Mío! Una fotografía de la carroza Los Croods


Saturday's traditional Epiphany Parade in Madrid had at least one noticeably non-traditional element in it. A Croods float. A HUMUNGOUS Croods float.

According to Wikipedia, children in Spain traditionally receive their Christmas presents on Jan. 6, the day The Three Wise Men were said to have visited the baby Jesus. Madrid's Epiphany Parade is the country's nationally televised kick-off to the festivities. (Think: The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, only on Christmas Eve.) Pretty cool concept, eh? I mean, I'm not a particularly religious fellow, but ANYTHING that extends Christmas by almost two weeks is a-okay with me!

Float photo courtesy of Demotix