Last Week in Animation: June 12th
By: F. Alexander Bonilla-Chacon
Welcome to Overly Animated’s Last Week in Animation! This is a recurring series where we aggregate the news items most relevant to fans of the shows we cover regularly, as well as interesting tidbits on other animated television and film projects.
Animation’s In Memoriam
Adam West, the actor that represented Batman to film and television audiences for the first time, died of complications from leukemia at the age of 88 on Saturday. After playing the Caped Crusader, he suffered through typecasting and Hollywood disdain of his role, falling out of fame once the 1970s rolled around. However, his 21st century career renaissance was propelled by a wildly successful guest spot on Seth MacFarlane’s adult animation Family Guy, where West played the mayor. In voice work, some may also remember him playing his animated self in The Fairly OddParents. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Peter Sallis, the Englishman most famous for providing the voice of Wallace in Aardman Animations’ Wallace and Gromit franchise, passed away peacefully at home at the age of 96. Prior to first taking the Wallace role in 1989, he had also performed voice work for other early stop motion shorts, such as The Wind in the Willows and Oh! Mr. Toad. Sallis won a voice acting award at the Annies for his work in the 2005 film Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. [Animation Magazine]
Voltron: Legendary Defender has a targeted Netflix ad out publicizing the upcoming release of Season 3, which will drop on August 4 according to the trailer.
Coco released its second trailer, with a bit of extra footage from the first teaser released by Pixar. Alongside the trailer, there was a press release boasting about the all-Hispanic cast, perhaps in an effort to continue distinguishing itself from the similarly-premised but more celebrity-casted The Book of Life. Some of the new names that are part of Coco include Gael Garcia Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Alfonso Arau, Gabriel Iglesias, Cheech Marin and Lombardo Boyar. [Animation Magazine]
Lupin the Third: Part IV will premiere on Adult Swim’s Toonami block on June 17 at 2 AM. As the title suggests, this is the fourth incarnation of the anime following the grandson of a world-famous thief. It aired in Italy and Japan two years ago, and will finally make its way to the Americas. The second incarnation of the anime was one of the earliest to air on Adult Swim, so the franchise has a close history with the network.
Other News and Notes
- Cowboy Bebop, one of the more well-known Japanese anime series to Western viewers, is set to get a live action remake on our side of the world. According to Variety, we know that Sunrise Inc, the studio in charge of producing the original version of the series, will be involved in the project. Other than the project existing, we know nothing yet about cast or release date or story.
- Deedee Magno Hall, voice actress for Pearl on Steven Universe, posted on Instagram a picture of her and her castmates in a recording studio for the show. In addition to the regulars (Michaela Dietz, Amethyst; Shelby Rabara, Peridot; Jennifer Paz, Lapis), there were also appearances from Grace Rolek (Connie), Estelle (Garnet) and AJ Michalka (Stevonnie). Estelle is of particular note, as the crew has said that she usually records off-studio. We can only speculate if they were all present in the same episode recording or if they all happened to be scheduled on the same day for separate dates.
- McKenzie Atwood, a popular poster of Steven Universe memes and parodies on YouTube, announced that she has begun an internship with the Steven Universe crew in California. Don’t let your memes be dreams, kids. [Twitter]
- SpongeBob SquarePants is getting a Broadway show, set to premiere to the public on December 4. The musical will include original songs written by Steven Tyler, John Legend, Cyndi Lauper, T.I. and David Bowie. Everything is possible. [ToonZone]
- And finally, in this edition of Weird Animation of the Week, not enough weird video came out this week, so I’m leaning on an oldie but goodie, 2012’s Pingu’s “The Thing” by stop motion animator Lee Hardcastle. Not recommended for those who are weak when it comes to red clay.