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Don Bluth

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BUSINESS
May 6, 1994 | JEFF KAYE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
While Walt Disney Co. has proven repeatedly that animated films can reach the highest box office echelons, no other studio has been able to duplicate that success. But with the potential payoff so huge--not just in ticket sales but in videos, merchandising and other areas--the major studios are embracing animation like never before.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 2, 2008 | Valerie J. Nelson, Times Staff Writer
Morris F. Sullivan, who ran a financial consulting firm before helping to establish an animation studio in Ireland populated by ex-Disney artists, died Aug. 24 of complications related to old age at his Toluca Lake home, his family said. He was 91. In 1979, three of Disney's top animators -- including Don Bluth -- left the company with a group of artists who felt production values were being compromised for the bottom line. The maverick studio they set up in Van Nuys was struggling financially when a golf partner persuaded the semi-retired Sullivan to step in. The animators screened their 1982 film "The Secret of NIMH" for him, and Sullivan responded: "I'm your guardian angel.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 12, 1989 | JACK MATHEWS
Early in Don Bluth's "All Dogs Go to Heaven," as the deceased junkyard dog Charlie is being welcomed by an angelic whippet at the gates of heaven, the camera pans past a batch of clocks hanging suspended above the clouds. On the face of just one of them is the small but instantly recognizable silhouette of Mickey Mouse. Nice touch. Not only is it a comfort to know that Mickey will always be there for us, but it's a spicy bit of homage from the Disney animators who 10 years ago shocked their elders by walking out on Mickey, Minnie and the rest of the animated cast at Walt Disney Productions, complaining that the studio had lost its way with classical animation.
NEWS
October 24, 2002 | Steve Appleford, Special to The Times
Dirk the Daring sure doesn't look like much of a revolutionary. He is a flat-footed knucklehead in unshining armor, in way over his head on a quest to rescue the girl from a fire-breathing dragon. But two decades ago, Dirk was a pioneer in the convergence of video games and movies that is now a major trend in on-screen entertainment. Dirk was the hero of Dragon's Lair, a 1983 arcade game with rare cinematic qualities, marrying classic hand-painted animation with laser-disc technology.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 6, 1988 | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
The British entertainment company Goldcrest has signed a $40-million deal with animation director Don Bluth and partner Morris Sullivan to produce three animated features at Sullivan Bluth Studios Ireland Ltd.--their Dublin facility--over the next three years. Production is already under way on the first feature, "All Dogs Go to Heaven." Sullivan Bluth's "The Land Before Time Began," will be released this Christmas by Steven Spielberg's Amblin' Productions.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 2, 2008 | Valerie J. Nelson, Times Staff Writer
Morris F. Sullivan, who ran a financial consulting firm before helping to establish an animation studio in Ireland populated by ex-Disney artists, died Aug. 24 of complications related to old age at his Toluca Lake home, his family said. He was 91. In 1979, three of Disney's top animators -- including Don Bluth -- left the company with a group of artists who felt production values were being compromised for the bottom line. The maverick studio they set up in Van Nuys was struggling financially when a golf partner persuaded the semi-retired Sullivan to step in. The animators screened their 1982 film "The Secret of NIMH" for him, and Sullivan responded: "I'm your guardian angel.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 5, 1989 | CHARLES CHAMPLIN, TIMES ARTS EDITOR
At a USC screening of "The Little Mermaid" the other night, a young woman asked the co-authors and co-directors, in a tone that could be characterized as civilly indignant, whether a woman had been consulted in the creation of the script. Was what she called the "Some-Day-My-Prince-Will-Come" Syndrome (in which the answer to any mermaid's prayer is simply to find a good man) their work solely or a coeducational enterprise?
ENTERTAINMENT
April 6, 1992 | DAVID GRITTEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It's been more than 12 years since Don Bluth and 16 colleagues shocked the world of animation by walking out of Walt Disney Productions, complaining that the studio's traditions of producing "classical animation" had been abandoned. In those 12 years, animation has enjoyed a significant revival in creative terms and Bluth and his colleagues, despite fluctuations in their fortunes, have survived as major players in the field.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 18, 1988 | SHEILA BENSON, Times Film Critic
Parents may have a hard time scraping dinosaur goo off the young ones they take to "The Land Before Time," (citywide) a fatally cunning animation feature set back when the earth really moved. Having dinosaurs, a whole array of different species, as central characters is an interesting challenge. Their size and the relative mystery about their disappearance still carry an almost primal fascination.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 17, 1989 | PETER RAINER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
I've always loved the idea of feature-length animated movies more than I've loved the movies themselves. Although there are many notable exceptions, animation seems to work best in the short form; few feature-length animated movies have the sustained snap and invention of, say, the best Disney and Warners shorts. This is to some degree a matter of economics.
BUSINESS
May 6, 1994 | JEFF KAYE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
While Walt Disney Co. has proven repeatedly that animated films can reach the highest box office echelons, no other studio has been able to duplicate that success. But with the potential payoff so huge--not just in ticket sales but in videos, merchandising and other areas--the major studios are embracing animation like never before.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 6, 1992 | DAVID GRITTEN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It's been more than 12 years since Don Bluth and 16 colleagues shocked the world of animation by walking out of Walt Disney Productions, complaining that the studio's traditions of producing "classical animation" had been abandoned. In those 12 years, animation has enjoyed a significant revival in creative terms and Bluth and his colleagues, despite fluctuations in their fortunes, have survived as major players in the field.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 1992 | ALEENE MacMINN, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
Thumbs Up: Thumbelina may just be a tiny slip of a girl, but MGM is hoping she'll bring big bucks at the box office. The studio has signed animator Don Bluth to make "Thumbelina," a film based on the Hans Christian Andersen character, as part of a three-picture deal.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 12, 1991
In response to "Filling Up the Tables of the Hungry Everywhere," editorial, Nov. 28: Thank you for your excellent Thanksgiving Day editorial on world hunger. The work of private philanthropic agencies in combatting hunger is indeed admirable and absolutely essential. But we should keep in mind that their efforts can be swamped by negative decisions by the U.S. government.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 5, 1989 | CHARLES CHAMPLIN, TIMES ARTS EDITOR
At a USC screening of "The Little Mermaid" the other night, a young woman asked the co-authors and co-directors, in a tone that could be characterized as civilly indignant, whether a woman had been consulted in the creation of the script. Was what she called the "Some-Day-My-Prince-Will-Come" Syndrome (in which the answer to any mermaid's prayer is simply to find a good man) their work solely or a coeducational enterprise?
ENTERTAINMENT
November 17, 1989 | PETER RAINER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
I've always loved the idea of feature-length animated movies more than I've loved the movies themselves. Although there are many notable exceptions, animation seems to work best in the short form; few feature-length animated movies have the sustained snap and invention of, say, the best Disney and Warners shorts. This is to some degree a matter of economics.
NEWS
October 24, 2002 | Steve Appleford, Special to The Times
Dirk the Daring sure doesn't look like much of a revolutionary. He is a flat-footed knucklehead in unshining armor, in way over his head on a quest to rescue the girl from a fire-breathing dragon. But two decades ago, Dirk was a pioneer in the convergence of video games and movies that is now a major trend in on-screen entertainment. Dirk was the hero of Dragon's Lair, a 1983 arcade game with rare cinematic qualities, marrying classic hand-painted animation with laser-disc technology.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 12, 1989 | JOHN CULHANE
"If I become human, I'll never be with my father or sisters again," says the mermaid on the screen. "That's right," says the sea witch Ursula, "but you'll have your man." On the word man, this flamboyant octopus villainess leers like Jack Nicholson--and no wonder. Disney animator Kathy Zielinski fell in love with Nicholson's leer when she saw "The Witches of Eastwick," analyzed the movement of muscles and flash of eyes that produce it, and adapted them to a sinister sea creature's countenance.
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