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The Censorship of South Park and Our Culture's Courage

  I am of course confident that I will fulfill my tasks as a writer in all circumstances—from my grave even more successfully and more irrefutably than in my lifetime. No one can bar the road to truth, and to advance its cause I am prepared to accept even death. But may it be that […]

Robert Zemeckis Revealed to be Motion-Captured CGI Animated Character

Film director Robert Zemeckis (Back to the Future, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Beowulf, and A Christmas Carol (you know, the ugly-ass version that came out last year)) has been revealed to be a motion-captured CGI animated creature disguising himself as a normal human being (seen in photo at right between Tim Burton (left) and Joseph […]

Spring 2010 Anime Preview

In a just a matter of days, a new slate of animated programming will begin in Japan. As the fandom fires up its anticipation for what could be a fruitful spring for Japanese animation, here at the toonzone blog we’re going to try focusing in on what we think some of the highlights of the […]

What's Wrong with Disney Feature Animation? - Part 2

Continued from Part 1 of What’s Wrong with Disney Feature Animation? MERCHANDISE VS. MEDIA The 1990’s and 2000’s saw a massive rise in Disney’s merchandising efforts, such as the extremely successful launch of the Disney Princesses franchise itself. One might even argue that Disney is now essentially a merchandising company that makes its own media, rather than a […]

What's Wrong with Disney Feature Animation? - Part 1

“There is always an easy solution to every human problem — neat, plausible, and wrong.” — H.L. Mencken What’s wrong with Walt Disney Feature Animation? The Princess and the Frog‘s $24.2 million opening weekend and $104 million total box office take (which comes $1 million short of covering its production costs) was a major box-office […]

Miyazaki Week: Why "Princess Mononoke" is Not an Environmentalist Fable

One common criticism I’ve seen of Hayao Miyazaki’s Princess Mononoke is that it’s “environmentalist,” which is usually used to mean the sort of preachy, treacly, Earth First screed where people are Bad and nature is Good, end of story. Really, I have to wonder if we’re watching the same movie. While there is a healthy […]

Forgotten Licensed Anime: Saint Tail

Ever since Japan started making cartoons, they’ve been brought over to the West. After the runaway success of Pokémon and Cartoon Network’s Toonami block, anime began to explode here in the West, giving us animated exploits that have never been seen before. Unfortunately, with all the series that are brought over, many are lost in the shuffle […]

A Few Random Thoughts on the 2010 Oscar Nominations

The 82nd Academy Award nominations have been announced, with Disney/Pixar’s Up getting a nod for Best Picture in addition to the expected Best Animated Feature nomination. I have to admit that as much as I liked the movie, I don’t think it’s the one I would have picked among Pixar’s total output to get the […]

Best Animated Feature of 2009: "Coraline"

This week, Toon Zone News looks back at 2009 by reposting our reviews of what we felt was the best that the year had to offer. Whatever else may be said about 2009, it was an auspicious year for animated features. It brought new films from Pixar (Up) and Hayao Miyazaki (Ponyo); Walt Disney’s return […]

Voice Actor for a Weekend: Top 5 More Lessons from Bob Bergen's Advanced Class

Last year, I took a beginner voice acting class with Bob Bergen when he brought it to New York City, and had so much fun doing it that I wanted to take his advanced class this year. Luckily, taking Bob’s class last year fooled him into thinking that I was qualified for the advanced class. […]

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