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August 2015

Newsbytes archive for July 2015

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Contributors this month include crossaffliction, dronon, Equivamp, GreenReaper, InkyCrow, Patch Packrat, mwalimu, RingtailedFox and Sonious.

Review: 'The Laputan Factor' by Tristan Black Wolf

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The Laputan FactorTristan Black Wolf's The Laputan Factor opens with software developer Night O'Connell enjoying a well-earned rest in the company of his hyena boyfriend. Or with fighter pilot 1st Lt Ambrose Bierce Kovach about to enter a simulated exercise aboard the star cruiser Heartwielder. As scenes and viewpoints switch, which of these almost-identical, head-hopping tigers is the real one? Both? Neither?

The story that follows is a science fiction gay romantic comedy mystery caper, with two realities' worth of characters helping or hindering the increasingly urgent quest to work out what's going on and how to fix it.

That's about as much as I can write about the plot without the risk of ruining readers' enjoyment by blurting out spoilers. I can't even be specific about which cult 1960s TV series turns out to be vitally important. However, I can and will say that I enjoyed The Laputan Factor very much, and that if you like your furry fiction with buff, wisecracking characters, action, and a touch of mystery, you'll probably enjoy it too.

AuthorHouse, June 2015, trade paperback $16.95 (202 pages), Kindle $3.99. Illustrated by Dream&Nightmare.

2016 movie showdown, part 5: Zootopia vs. The Secret Life of Pets

Zootopia
78% (14 votes)
The Secret Life of Pets
22% (4 votes)
Votes: 18

LionsGate releases information about upcoming animated furry movies

Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (4 votes)

LionsGate Entertainment, best known, at least furry and animation-wise, for Alpha and Omega and its various direct to video sequels, has released a trailer for its January 15, 2016 theatrical movie, Norm of the North, which features a polar bear taking a trip to New York City to save the Arctic ice cap.

At least the scene where titular polar bear Norm meets a man in a polar bear suit is interesting from a furry standpoint.

Perhaps more exciting than the trailer itself is the announcement of the release date, which sees the movie go up directly against The Nut Job 2; it seems release date power plays aren't just for superhero movies, anymore. It may be interesting to see if either movie "flinches" in this cinematic game of chicken.

Update (8/8): A Cartoon Brew commenter has pointed out Nut Job 2 has already apparently flinched; its listed IMDB release date has changed.

Trailer: 'Rock Dog'

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So, Disney goes out of there way to advertise the very anthropomorphic nature of next animated movie (you couldn't resist the awful fur pun, could you, Disney? It's okay, we know how it is.), and it turns out everyone and their Rock Dog has chosen to come out with similar movies within months of each other. Rock Dog, though a Chinese production with no American release date (it does have an October 1 Chinese release date), is meant to be the movie that breaks Chinese animation into America.

And it's every bit as anthropomorphic an animal world as Zootopia or Kung Fu Panda 3, and, at the very least, it looks much more promising than Legend of a Rabbit.

Three coming Russian animated features with anthro animals

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Sheep and WolvesThe Hollywood Reporter announced on May 13 that Wizart Animation in Moscow (business office) and Voronezh (animation studio) is producing The Snow Queen 3 for release in late 2016. Presumably this is in Russia, and it’ll come to the U.S. in 2017. Also presumably the cast will include Orm the troll and Gerda’s pet ermine Luta, since they were so popular in The Snow Queen and The Snow Queen 2: The Snow King.

The same Hollywood Reporter article announces that Wizart is pre-selling its own Sheep and Wolves featuring anthro wolves and sheep – it’s titled Volkii I Ovtsi (wolves and sheep), in Russian. Here’s the the English language for Sheep and Wolves.

The article continues, "Wizart will also be […] offering pre-sales for Urfin and His Wooden Soldiers (by Melnitsa Animation)."

2015 Anthropomorphics Reading List: August 8 update

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by Heather BrutonThe Anthropomorphics Literature and Arts Association (ALAA), which administers the annual Ursa Major Awards, has updated the 2015 Anthropomorphics Reading List to include the titles recommended by furry fans through August 8. This list is often used by fans to nominate in the next year’s Awards.

All fans are invited to recommend worthwhile anthropomorphic works in eleven categories (motion pictures, dramatic short films or broadcasts, novels, short fiction, other literary works, graphic stories, comic strips, magazines, published illustrations, websites, and games) first published during 2015, if they are not already on the list. Send in your recommendations to recommended@ursamajorawards.org, and read the List to see what other fans have recommended.

Nominations for the 2015 Ursa Major Awards, in the same eleven categories, will open on 14 January 2016 (the first day of Further Confusion 2016) and will be accepted until 28 February. Don’t miss this opportunity to nominate the titles that you felt have been the best anthropomorphic movies, novels, comic strips and books, websites, games, etc. of 2015 for the Awards. And don’t forget to vote when the polls open on 15 March.

2016 movie showdown, part 6: Sly Cooper vs. Spark

Sly Cooper
85% (23 votes)
Spark
15% (4 votes)
Votes: 27

Upcoming furry comics for September 2015

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Furry comics making the top 100 list for May 2015 include:

Disney to produce new 'Lion King' direct-to-TV movie in November

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Whoa; we didn’t see this one coming -- so soon, anyway. Multiple sources (abc.news.go.com; Animation Scoop; ComingSoon.net; Variety; etc.) announced yesterday that the Disney Channel will present a brand-new Lion King direct-to-TV short movie in November: The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar. The movie will be a prelude to a new The Lion Guard TV series that the Disney Channel will present in early 2016.

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar will be about the adult Simba and Nala’s juvenile son Kion, and his forming a new Lion Guard team – traditionally the pride’s bravest adult lions, to police the African savannah – with his own juvenile friends: Bunga, a honey badger; Ono, an egret; Fuli, a cheetah; and Beshte, a hippo. Their adversaries will include the juvenile sons of the evil hyenas in The Lion King; from the teaser, it’s obvious that the crazy hyena Ed has a son.

Further details are in the articles. More will be presented at Disney’s D23 expo in Anaheim on August 16.

Update 10/15: A new trailer has revealed the date will specifically be Sunday, Nov. 22.

1,000 marching Pikachus

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This news is a year old, but I don’t recall seeing any mention of it on any furry newssite from then until now..

There was a Pikachu Tairyou Hassei Chu (“An Outbreak of Pikachus”) Pokémon convention in Yokohama on August 9-17, 2014 that included a march of 1,000 costumed Pikachus (according to original press releases; it appears considerably less Pikachus actually marched) through the city.

Many people took videos of the marching Pikachus, added music including heavy metal tracks, John Williams’ Star Wars Imperial march and old Imperial Japanese Army military marches, then posted them to YouTube.

Shakira to play a sexy pop star gazelle in 'Zootopia'

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GazellePop star Shakira revealed via Twitter that she would be playing the character of Gazelle, the world of "Zootopia's biggest pop star." Apparently, Gazelle is a ... gazelle (perhaps Shakira is a chinkara?). The pop star also revealed she would be performing a song, "Try Everything," for the movie.

The announcements were part of Disney's D23 expo, which was held to promote Disney's many upcoming movies. Footage from Zootopia was shown; it is actually the first footage of the movie shown (the previously released teaser trailer featured a unique scene). The footage shown featured duel protagonist fox Nick Wilde's and rabbit Judy Hopps' actual first meeting (involving a young fox in an elephant suit) and a scene at a sloth run DMV. Aquatic mustelid fans will also be pleased to note that the previously revealed "missing mammal" case that is the basis of the plot is actually a missing otter.