The Morning Watch is a recurring feature that highlights a handful of noteworthy videos from around the web. They could be video essays, fanmade productions, featurettes, short films, hilarious sketches, or just anything that has to do with our favorite movies and TV shows.
In this edition, take a look back at some of the weirdest and worst Transformers from over the years, from both the various animated series and toy shelves. Plus, animators react to the classic anime Akira and dig into the basics and history of animation. And finally, take a virtual ride on the Ratatouille attraction from Disneyland Paris and learn some fun facts about the adventure. Read More »
Fans of Katsuhiro Otomo‘s 1988 anime classic are about to get inundated with Akira. On top of the embattled live-action feature film that has finally kicked into gear with Taika Waititi helming, Otomo has confirmed that he will be directing a new Akira anime sequel series, right as the original 1988 film is set to receive a 4K remaster.
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Warner Bros. has been trying to make a live-action Akira movie for years, and so many talented filmmakers have cycled through its development that I honestly never thought we’d see it happen. But it looks like director Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok, The Hunt for the Wilderpeople) is going to be the one to finally crack it, because the film now has an official release date. Read More »
It looks like the live-action Akira is still a go, and that Taika Waititi is still the most likely candidate to direct. A recent story revealed that the Leonardo DiCaprio-produced film had just scored $18.5 million in tax credits, indicating some form of production is coming down the track, and fast. Hollywood has been trying to bring a live-action adaptation of the 1988 Japanese animated film (and the manga of the same name) for several years now.
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This article contains spoilers for Akira and the Batman-centric DCAU films and TV shows.
A giant explosion of light and sound. Biker gangs and crime-ridden streets. A city run by crooked politicians and a militarized police force. A flawed hero who operates outside the law and is pitted against a villain who thrives on chaos. All these make Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, the spinoff film of Batman: The Animated Series, one of the most iconic representations of the DC Comics hero ever put to a screen, but they’re also major parts of what make the legendary anime film Akira tick, too.
Both films celebrated big anniversaries last year — Phantasm turned 25 on December 25, and Akira crested its 30th birthday on July 16 — and they’re both still widely respected as classics of their respective art forms. It’s not an exaggeration to say Katsuhiro Otomo, creator of the Akira manga and director of the film, influenced a generation of artists around the world, and you can say the same for the film’s version of Batman created by Bruce Timm, Eric Radomski, and Alan Burnett.
What’s harder to pin down is what the two iconic movies have in common. While they couldn’t be more different plotwise, both films share a lot of DNA that showed up not just Phantasm‘s source TV series Batman: The Animated Series, but the rest of the DC Animated Universe properties for years to come. There’s clear homage to Akira, yes, but over the years the B:TAS spinoff properties have also borrowed its animators and — most importantly — ideas that enrich how we understand the character today.
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(Welcome to Let’s Get Animated!, a column that spotlights the best of film animation. In this edition: the most beautiful animated movies.)
Over the weekend, one of the most imaginative and visually striking animated movies ever made hit theaters. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is being hailed as a groundbreaking achievement, and a testament to the creative heights that animation can reach. But it’s not the first animated movie to push the boundaries of the medium.
Animation so often gets dismissed a “children’s genre” that it’s often overlooked how damn beautiful these movies can get. Cinema is first and foremost a visual medium, and no other medium can test the limits of the imagination and realize the potential of filmmaking like animation. So in honor of the release of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, here are the 15 most beautiful animated films ever.
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At the very beginning of Akira, Katsuhiro Otomo’s landmark anime feature, the date “1988.7.16” appears on screen as the camera traces a long metropolitan expressway up through a vast urban sprawl to where a cluster of Tokyo skyscrapers is visible with Mount Fuji in the distance. Suddenly, everything is enveloped in an all-consuming white blast.
That’s the effect the movie itself would have on pop culture. 30 years ago today, Akira helped introduce the Western world to anime and beyond the oft-cited laundry list of film and television properties it influenced in Hollywood — The Matrix, the Star Wars prequels, Chronicle, Looper, and Stranger Things being among the more notable examples — the movie also predicted the real-world site of the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Saddle up on your futuristic red motorcycles and let’s take a look back at Akira on its 30th anniversary. Spoilers follow for one of the greatest science fiction and animated films of all time.
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Gallery 1988 has delivered another round of incredible pop culture artwork with Crazy 4 Cult 11, the latest iteration of the recurring exhibition of artwork paying tribute to some of our favorite movies.
This time we have a collection that includes pieces honoring movies like Gremlins, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Big Lebowski, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Poltergeist, Blade Runner, Beetlejuice, Back to the Future, and even The Room. Check out some of our favorite pieces from the Crazy 4 Cult 11 art show below. Read More »
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Taika Waititi has made the leap to big blockbuster filmmaking with Thor: Ragnarok, set to hit theaters this week. Already tracking to be a box office hit, Thor‘s success will likely launch Waititi to helming even bigger projects. His name has already been mentioned several times in connection with the live-action Akira movie, and while there’s no official deal yet, Waititi has weighed-in on what type of Akira film he might make.
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Taika Waititi is about to become a bonafide blockbuster director when Thor: Ragnarok hits theaters in a few weeks. With this newfound fame often comes talk of even bigger projects. One film that Waititi has been rumored to be involved with is the inevitable live-action Akira remake. The filmmaker recently revealed some details on the project, and even addressed the whitewashing casting concerns that swirl around the Akira remake. Get the Akira remake casting details below.
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