The Animation Lover’s Holiday Gift Guide

FULLY BOOKED
The Art of Ferdinand (Titan Books, $40) puts the colorful world of Blue Sky’s latest release into your hooves, with 160 pages of behind-the-scenes art and insights. Author Tara Bennett (The Art of Rio) deftly guides readers on a visually rich journey through an animated Spain, from Ferdinand’s quiet farm to the bustle of the big city. Plus, foreword by Carlos Saldanha. Little ones will love the Viking Books re-issue of Munro Leaf’s The Story of Ferdinand with adorable plush toy ($19).

The Story of Ferdinand plush
The Story of Ferdinand plush
The Art of Ferdinand
The Art of Ferdinand

Released a few months ago, Awakening Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle (Weldon Owen, $50) is a must-have for fans of mid-20th century animation and artwork. Assembled by The Walt Disney Family Museum in conjunction with a commemorative show, about a third of the book is dedicated to Earle’s work on Disney films like Sleeping Beauty. Much of the written information will be familiar to readers of his autobiography, but the artworks are beautifully reproduced.

Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle
Awaking Beauty: The Art of Eyvind Earle

With his latest project Blade Runner 2049 released, it’s a great time to get re-acquainted with The Movie Art of Syd Mead: Visual Futurist (Titan Books, $50). The 250+ page hardcover is the most comprehensive collection yet of Mead’s visionary conceptual work over the past 40 years. With images, sketches and never-before-scene material, each page gives fresh insight into the master’s creative practice.

The Movie Art of Syd Mead: Visual Futurist
The Movie Art of Syd Mead: Visual Futurist

Our stocking-stuff pick this year is the new boxed set of Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men: The Flipbooks (Disney Edition, $60). Introduced by Pete Docter, each little gem features a line-drawn scene originally animated by legends Ub Iwerks, Norm Ferguson, Bill Tytla, Ham Luske, Art Babbitt, Grim Gatwick, Freddie Moore, Hal King and John Sibley.

Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men: The Flipbooks
Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men: The Flipbooks

DELUXE TOY BOX
Spoil the Star Wars fans on your list! Big kids (like us) would love to unwrap the Jedi Challenges AR Experience kit from Lenovo ($200, Best Buy) or an App-Enabled Droid from Sphero ($150), available in BB-9E, BB-8 and R2-D2 flavors. And for lucky little Jedi-in-training, you cannot beat the Landspeeder 12 Volt Ride On from Radio Flyer, a mere $500 at Toys R Us.

Jedi Challenges AR Experience
Jedi Challenges AR Experience
Star Wars Sphero App-Enabled Droid
Star Wars Sphero App-Enabled Droid

For unstoppable indie animators, gamers and VR pioneers, nothing could beat a full-body suit of Enflux Motion Capture Clothing, a relative steal at just $500. The gear includes free Unity SDKs and Blender motion-capture plugin, plus free email support and a 12-month guarantee. Available in figure-flattering black!

Enflux Motion Capture Clothing
Enflux Motion Capture Clothing

If you were thinking about a holiday marriage proposal with a flashy ring, can we suggest instead the fantastic, interactive, fully mobile and app-enabled Tachikoma from Cerevo? At $1,800, it’ll show the Ghost in the Shell fan of your dreams that you really care. (available at gstore.cerevo.com)

Cerevo Tachikoma
Cerevo Tachikoma

How Marvelous! Bodyfriend Inc. has come out with striking Massage Chairs inspired by Captain America, Iron Man and Spider-Man ($1,580, bodyfriend.com) to unwind after a long day of crime fighting. Logan Hollowell has sparkle covered with the Thor: Ragnarok jewelry line, including Hela Green Agate Constellation Ring ($350, loganhollowell.com). More practical is Ukonic’s Thor Hammer Tool Kit ($99, thinkgeek.com). It’s true, you really can license anything.

Marvel Bodyfriend Inc. Massage Chair
Marvel Bodyfriend Inc. Massage Chair
Logan Hollowell Hela Green Agate Constellation Ring
Logan Hollowell Hela Green Agate Constellation Ring

 

Ukonic Thor Hammer Tool Kit
Ukonic Thor Hammer Tool Kit

 

HOME (ENTERTAINMENT) FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Calling all anime-niacs! Gift-worthy new releases include Project Itoh’s dystopian meditation on terrorism and security Genocidal Organ (Funimation, $35 BD | $30 DVD); Sentai Filmworks BD box sets of The Squid Girl S1 & 2 ($200) and Haven’t You Heard? I’m Sakamoto! ($170) packed with goodies; Bayview BD Ultra Edition sets of Revolutionary Girl Utena 20th Anniversary ($230) and Mobile Suit Gundam Wing ($270); and the third season of Sailor Moon Crystal (VIZ, $80 LE BD | $40). Gift cards can go towards the two-movie Barefoot Gen set, out Dec. 26 (Discotek, $30 BD | $20).

Genocidal Organ
Genocidal Organ
Haven't You Heard? I'm Sakamoto
Haven’t You Heard? I’m Sakamoto
Revolutionary Girl Utena
Revolutionary Girl Utena

 

Brush up on your superhero lore with the limited edition DC Universe: 10th Anniversary Collection Blu-ray box (WB, $300 SRP). In addition to 30 animated DCU movies and five shorts — from classic comic-book arcs like Superman Doomsday to toon originals like Gods and Monsters — the set includes over 20 hours of brand-new and classic bonus content, exclusive collectible coins and a 40-page adult coloring book. (No, not the “I left ‘safe search’ off doing a Google image search for Harley Quinn” kind of adult.)

DC Universe 10th Anniversary Collection
DC Universe 10th Anniversary Collection

Take home the interlocking action of The LEGO Ninjago Movie on DVD, BD, BD 3D and 4K ($29, $36, $45, $45) from WB, and relive Green Ninja Lloyd’s (Dave Franco) struggles against the forces of ultimate darkness — lead by his dad! The upper echelon releases tack on tons of extras, including behind-the-scenes featurettes, mini-movies, music videos and deleted scenes.

The LEGO Ninjago Movie
The LEGO Ninjago Movie

Feed your visual sweettooth with the pure eye-candy of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (Lionsgate, $40 BD). Adapted from the popular French comics, director Luc Besson takes full advantage of cutting-edge animation and vfx to follow Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Loreline (Cara Delevigne) on a frenetic interstellar adventure. Also on 4K Ultra HD ($43) and DVD ($30).

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

For a touch of European eccentricity, we recommend Stéphane Aubier & Vincent Patar’s cult-hit stop-motion series A Town Called Panic: The Collection (GKIDS, $25 BD), and enjoy the antics of plastic heroes Cowboy, Indian and Horse, who never fail to attract chaos.

A Town Called Panic: The Collection
A Town Called Panic: The Collection

LOOK TO THE FUTURE!
Peanuts 2018 Day-to-Day Calendar
Rick and Morty 16-Month 2018 Calendar
Wallace & Gromit Official Slim 2018 Calendar
Disney Villains 2018 Calendar

Peanuts 2018 Day-to-Day Calendar
Peanuts 2018 Day-to-Day Calendar
Rick and Morty 16-Month 2018 Calendar
Rick and Morty 16-Month 2018 Calendar
Wallace & Gromit Official Slim 2018 Calendar
Wallace & Gromit Official Slim 2018 Calendar
Disney Villains 2018 Calendar
Disney Villains 2018 Calendar

…AND LOOK GOOD IN THE FUTURE!
Game of Thrones Dragonstone Tee ($25, store.hbo.com)
My Neighbor Totoro Cosplay Dress ($41-43, hottopic.com)
Nickelodeon X Love Tribe Collection (lovetribeapparel.com | Macy’s)
Steven Universe Jacket ($60, cartoonnetworkshop.com)
Stranger Things Team Barb Tee ($29, boxlunch.com)

Game of Thrones Dragonstone Tee
Game of Thrones Dragonstone Tee
My Neighbor Totoro Cosplay Dress
My Neighbor Totoro Cosplay Dress
Nickelodeon X Love Tribe Collection
Nickelodeon X Love Tribe Collection
Steven Universe Jacket
Steven Universe Jacket
Stranger Things Team Barb Tee
Stranger Things Team Barb Tee
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