News Bytes: Marcel the Shell’s Movie Etiquette, Universal Bumps ‘Migration’, New ‘Paws of Fury’ Clips & More

Cinema’s most adorable mollusk is lending an extra special touch to Alamo Drafthouse screenings of Marcel the Shell with Shoes On , with the Jenny Slate character starring in a bespoke “Don’t Talk” PSA advising moviegoers of proper theater behavior and the best way to shush. Directed by Dean Fleischer-Camp and based on the viral hit short of the same name, the stop-motion/live-action feature began its limited run this past weekend, scoring a $159.4K specialty box office opening. The film opens nationwide July 15 through A24.

Synopsis: Marcel (Slate) is an adorable one-inch-tall shell who ekes out a colorful existence with his grandmother Connie (Isabella Rossellini) and their pet lint, Alan. Once part of a sprawling community of shells, they now live alone as the sole survivors of a mysterious tragedy. But when a documentary filmmaker discovers them amongst the clutter of his Airbnb, the short film he posts online brings Marcel millions of passionate fans, as well as unprecedented dangers and a new hope at finding his long-lost family. A beloved character gets his big-screen debut in this hilarious and heartwarming story about finding connection in the smallest corners. Also starring Rosa Salazar, Thomas Mann and Lesley Stahl.

Benjamin Renner © Folivari | Panique! | Studiocanal | RTBF

Universal Pictures has migrated the release date for the original Illumination feature Migrationfrom next summer (June 30, 2023)  to Friday, December 22, 2023. The prior date stacked the modern-day family comedy against Indiana Jones 5; now, the holiday debut will see the animation powerhouse compete with Star Wars: Rogue Squadron and an untitled Star Trek sequel.

Directed by Oscar nominee Benjamin Renner (Ernest & Celestine) from an original screenplay by Mike White (School of Rock) and produced by Illumination founder Chris Meledandri, Migration centers on a family of ducks who convince their overprotective dad to go on the vacation of a lifetime, attempt to migrate from New England to the Bahamas via New York City.

Blue Water Film Festival 2022
Blue Water Film Festival 2022

The 3rd Annual Blue Water Film Festival, celebrating U.N. World Oceans Day, took place in San Diego from June 2-5. “This year’s festival will not only be remembered as a gathering of extraordinary environmental filmmakers with truly compelling stories about our oceans, water and the environment but a reminder of how important it is to bring community together,” said Greg Reitman, Festival Director & Founder. “We are honored to showcase some of the best environmental films curated around the globe. We consciously seek these culturally significant environmental stories that are the voices of our oceans.”

As previously announcedAquaTeam – Sea Adventure by Massimo Montigiani won the BWFF Grand Jury Award for Best Short Animated Film (juried by Reitman, Animation Magazine President Jean Thoren and NYU-Tisch Professor Karl Bardosh). Grand prizes also went to the documentary feature The Witness Is a Whale (Nick & Cheryl Dean) and live-action short The Fish & the Flame (Nick Hutchinson). The Global Citizen Award was bestowed on Dr. Jane Goodall, DBE, and the Eco Hero Award went to surf legend Damien Hobgood.

AquaTeam-Sea Adventure
AquaTeam – Sea Adventure

The kung fu comedy masters behind Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank have unleashed a brand-new training montage clip as well as a fresh lyric video for the featured song, an original produced for the movie by Ruwanga Samath, who has worked with artists like The Weeknd. Directed by Rob Minkoff, Mark Koetsier and Chris Bailey, the movie pounces into theaters on July 15 through Paramount Pictures/Nickelodeon Movies.

Synopsis: A hard-on-his-luck hound Hank (Michael Cera) finds himself in a town full of cats who need a hero to defend them from a ruthless villain’s (Ricky Gervais) evil plot to wipe their village off the map. With help from a reluctant teacher (Samuel L. Jackson) to train him, our underdog must assume the role of town samurai and team up with the villagers to save the day. The only problem… cats hate dogs! Also starring Mel Brooks, George Takei, Aasif Mandvi, Gabriel Iglesias, Djimon Hounsou, Michelle Yeoh, Kylie Kuioka and Cathy Shim.

Read all about Paws of Fury in the 35th Anniversary Issue of Animation Magazine (June-July ’22, No. 321), available now!

Indolent Allen

Adult Swim Smalls has launched its latest irreverent comedy toon on its YouTube channel. Created by popular TikTok (600K followers) and Instagram (72K) cartoonist Cliff Benfield, Indolent Allen follows Allen, a lazy college student who brings out the worst in every social circle he nudges into. Episode 2 will launch on June 30, followed by Episode 3 on July 7. All episodes will be made available on HBO Max later this year.

The titular character is voiced by Daniel Padulo. The series also features voice acting talent from N.Y.C. comedians including Savannah DesOrmeaux, Nadia Pinder, Derick Gonzalez and Jared Schwartz. All episodes are written by Benfield, Padulo and executive producer Adam Gold. The series is based on two proof of concept sketches shared to TikTok.

Cartoon Network continues to celebrate Pride this week with a special social media messages Bugs Bunny as well as Adventure Time #CoupleGoals Marceline & Princess Bubblegum.  The party continues with a two hour Proud to Be You programming block each night featuring themed episodes of Steven Universe.



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