A daily newsletter guide to what is happening on your screens - TV, streaming, movies, games, VR, AR
Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
Animaniacs has a coming out event
ALSO: Save the Double R Diner. AND: Soul goes straight to Disney+.
Over the weekend New York City Comic Con was held virtually, which means there is a lot of news today about genre TV shows and movies, along with a number of panel chats available to watch via YouTube.
So there’s a bit more news around today than usual for a Monday morning.
Animaniacs - there’s baloney in our slacks
Promoting the new Animaniacs cartoon debuting on Hulu in November, a brand new promotional video was released for Animaniacs. In a parody of Jurassic Park, the video features an animated Steven Spielberg (who was EP of the original Animaniacs series) and highlights the idea that the show is the same nonsense that it has always been, but the show is now produced in widescreen. Oh, and Pinky & The Brain will be back. Zoink!
You can see the video here:
The full NYCC panel is here:
Go homemade Evil with this panel
During the NYCC panel for Evil a season 2 trailer for the show was released. There’s only one trivial aspect worth noting: Not a single frame of the second season has been filmed yet.
Instead, here is the cast of Evil (a wicked entertaining show that you should check out) have recorded this trailer in self-isolation that keeps the cadence of a trailer without any of the actual visuals. It’s great.
If you want to watch the full panel, it is available HERE.
Soul ditches cinema. 2020 a theatrical wasteland.
Pixar movie Soul, one of the last-remaining big event movies of 2020 has dumped a big screen release. Instead, it will echo the release of the live-action Mulan and go straight to Disney+.
It echoes the release in that it will be on Disney+, but will get a cinema release in territories where the streaming service hasn’t launched. Unlike Mulan, viewers won’t have to pay more money. Instead Soul will just be included in the standard Disney+ subscription.
Wonder Woman: 1984 is the last remaining tentpole film yet to vacate 2020.
Expect a significant presence from Taiwan at this year’s MIPCOM TV trade show with The Magician on the Skywalk as a key title showcased. The series is a screen adaptation of the novel of the same name by author Wu Ming-yi. It carries a budget of $650,000 per episode - a record for a Taiwanese production.
“Developing projects in Taiwan means guaranteed creative freedom for producers, which [makes] Taiwan the engine of the Chinese-language creative content industry,” says Hu, who is also an accomplished author and former head of Kwang Hwa Information and Culture Center, an agency under the Ministry of Culture that promotes arts and culture in Hong Kong.
Being the first in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage, Taiwan does not shy away from social taboos, Hu says, adding that cultural productions that empower minorities, such as series related to LBGTQ topics, often gained recognition from locally and abroad.
In February this year some Twin Peaks superfans bought the real-life Double R diner. And then the pandemic hit. The owners are trying to ride out COVID and have plans to make it a destination for Twin Peaks fans.
Pretty early on, I found out that the previous owner was interested in selling. He wasn’t advertising. It wasn’t even a serious proposition, but as a fun idea we started talking about this. Like, We could do so much cool stuff to make that place better. The Twin Peaks experience could be so much better. The previous owner did not buy the place because he was a Twin Peaks fan — he bought it ’cause it was a diner.
As time went on, neither my husband or I were finding any good job opportunities that would allow us to live where we wanted to be. That’s when it became a more serious conversation, and even though I hadn’t been working there for long, the owner was really excited. It snowballed from there, and we got a Small Business Administration loan to buy the business. Our first day as the new owners was March 1, and then we found out we would have to be takeout only because of COVID.
Taking on Disney at its game, Netflix has plans to launch six animated films a year.
“Our animation ambition right now is not just to step up and be as big as someone who’s doing it today — we’re on a path to be releasing six animated features a year, which no major studio has ever done, on top of the very healthy slate of animated series,” says Sarandos. “The way we think about those things is not to say, ‘Well, how do we do it like someone else has done it?’ Because no one’s ever really done most of these functions at the scale that we’re doing, and the only way you could do that is to have a really trusted team, who will make decisions and take them seriously and own them.”