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'Zootopia' ('Zootropolis'?) coming sooner than you think

Your rating: None Average: 5 (2 votes)

Disney's ZootopiaThe release date of Disney’s forthcoming theatrical feature Zootopia (Zootropolis in the U.K., Portugal, Turkey and other countries; Zootropola in Croatia and Zwierzogród in Poland) is March 4, 2016. But on January 19, 2016, the Disney merchandising machine will release a slew of tie-in books, published by Disney print subsidiaries or licensed by it. Most, but not all of them, will be juvenile-oriented. Some of them, such as the Disney Zootopia Ultimate Sticker Book or Judy Hopps and the Missing Jumbo-Pop, will be little more than picture books featuring the leading characters. Others, such as the Zootopia Big Golden Book, will also be picture books but will show a condensation of the movie’s plot. And a few, such as Zootopia: The Official Handbook, Zootopia Junior Novelization and DK’s Disney Zootopia: The Essential Guide, will be of interest to the adult enthusiast. No lavish The Art of Zootopia coffee-table art book has been announced yet, but there will undoubtedly be one by next March – or sooner.

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

Your rating: None Average: 4.3 (3 votes)

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.

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

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

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.

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

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

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.

Three coming Russian animated features with anthro animals

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

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)."

Trailer: 'Rock Dog'

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

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.

LionsGate releases information about upcoming animated furry movies

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (2 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.

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

Trailer: Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

After all the recent 2016 movie trailers last month, we're going back to the present of 2015 with this month's movie trailers. Though a teaser was dropped last month, Pixar's first ever second movie of the year, The Good Dinosaur, has a brand new trailer. It neither confirms nor denies the possibility of migration.

2016 movie showdown, part 4: The Nut Job 2 vs. Spark

The Nut Job 2
43% (6 votes)
Spark
57% (8 votes)
Votes: 14

2016 movie showdown, part 3: Ratchet & Clank vs. Sly Cooper

Ratchet & Clank
40% (24 votes)
Sly Cooper
60% (36 votes)
Votes: 60

2016 movie showdown, part 2: The Secret Life of Pets vs. Finding Dory

The Secret Life of Pets
71% (10 votes)
Finding Dory
29% (4 votes)
Votes: 14

Review: 'Ted 2' will haunt your dreams

Your rating: None Average: 4 (1 vote)

Ted 2This movie gave me a nightmare. I'm not kidding.

I watched it last night, then decided to sleep on it before reviewing it. And I had bad dreams about watching a mostly plotless movie that kept interrupting itself with boring distractions, and it just wasn't funny at all. When I woke up, I didn't realize at first that Ted 2 was the inspiration for this bizarre dream. But, what else could it be? Actually this dream interpretation site I randomly Googled says it could mean I am:

... attempting to protect [my]self from [my] emotions and/or actions. Viewing them on a movie screen projects them onto another person and thus makes those feelings and actions seem more distant. [My] subconscious is trying to protect [me] from experiencing them directly.

Alternatively, it could mean:

To dream that [I am] watching a movie suggests that [I am] watching life pass [me] by. Perhaps [I am] living vicariously through the actions of others. Consider also how the movie parallels to situations in [my] waking life. [I should] observe how the characters relate to [me] and how they may represent an aspect of [my]self.

Well, that is incredibly depressing; I'm just going to continue on with the theory that watching a movie late in the day may cause me to dream about watching movies at night.