If you haven’t been fortunate enough to catch the traveling festival known as The Animation Show on one of its many stops around the nation, you can now pick up the DVD box set featuring some to the best animated shorts produced in recent years. The two-disc set features 20 shorts hand-picked by Beavis and Butt-Head and King of the Hill creator Mike Judge and Academy Award-nominated animator Don Hertzfeldt (Rejected, Billy’s Baloon).
The Animation Show kicked off its national tour in the fall of 2003 and featured the Academy Award-nominated shorts Mt. Head from Koji Yamamura; Das Rad (The Rocks) by Chris Stenner, Arvid Uibel and Heidi Wittlinger; Strange Invaders from Cordell Barker; and Fifty Percent Grey by Ruairi Robinson, along with a host of other new and classic pieces. In addition, Judge and Hertzfeld premiered some of their own new works. The second edition debuted in 2005 with such featured shorts as l Plympton’s Guard Dog; Blur Studio’s 3D sci-fi actioner Rockfish, Tomek Baginski’s ark military fable Fallen Art, Amanda Forbis’ and Wendy Tilby’s rotoscoped When the Day Breaks, Jonathan Nix’s 2D story of analog love in a digital world titled Hello and Don Hertzfeldt’s own 12-minute Sundance Festival opus, The Meaning of Life.
Hertzfeldt and fellow featured filmmakers Bill Plympton and Corky Quakenbush provide commentary on the DVD. Other extra features include a deleted pencil test by Judge; a Mt. Head concept art and character design gallery; motion tests, animatics and production art from Baginski’s The Cathedral; a Das Rad production photo albumn; a storyboard-to-scene comparison for La Course a L’abime; a featurette on animated shorts over the past 100 years; and making-of featurettes for Fallen Art, The Feds and Magda. There are also two bonus films: Chel White’s A Painful Glimpse into My Writing Process and Pes’ Kaboom and its accompanying behind-the-scenes look. The box set from Paramount Home Video retails for the suggested price of $26.99.
The third Animation Show program kicks off today, Jan. 16, in Santa Barbara. Calif. at the Arlington Theater at 8 p.m. From there, the show will travel on to a host of other major cities across the U.S. Films to be screened include Hertzfeldt’s own latest short, Everything Will be Ok, as well as Run Wrake’s Rabbit, Shane Acker’s 9, PES’ Game Over, Gaelle Denis’ City Paradise, Max Hattler’s Collision, Joanna Quinn’s Dreams and Desires, Remi Chaye’s Eaux Forte and Overtime by Oury Atlan,Thibaut Berland and Damien Ferrie. For more information, including tour dates, go to www.animationshow.com.