Animation


April 20, 2015 | 6:38 p.m.

‘Dragon Ball Z': Masako Nozawa, Goku and Frieza return for ‘Resurrection F’

Goku poses on teh red carpet at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. (Funimation)
They came with Son Goku’s orange training suits on, with wigs of his golden or brunet or red spiky hair, or dressed as the Saiyan Prince Vegeta, or dressed ornately as Goku’s main adversary Frieza — but they were all gathered at the Egyptian Theatre to celebrate the premiere of a new Dragon Ball Z movie, and toast one of the franchise’s biggest stars. “Dragon Ball Z: The Resurrection of ‘F'” opened in Japan this past weekend, and the 19th installment in the popular anime series debuted at the top of the box office charts with $7.6 million, besting even the hard-charging “Furious 7″ premiere. Filmmakers plan to screen the film in 74 countries worldwide. It’s scheduled to open in the U.S. this summer, but it premiered on April 11 in Hollywood at the Egyptian Theatre. On that day, an […]
April 18, 2015 | 2:56 p.m.

Star Wars Celebration: Familiar faces return for ‘Rebels’ season two

Scene featuring Darth Vader from the second season of "Star Wars Rebels." (Lucasfilm)
Executive producers Dave Filoni and Simon Kinberg were joined by members of the cast of “Star Wars Rebels” on stage Saturday to give fans a peek at what was ahead for the show’s upcoming second season. Based on the first official trailer, they’ll get a lot of chilling Darth Vader action, plus the return of some familiar faces from the previous “Clone Wars” animated series, including Ahsoka, Captain Rex and Hondo Ohnaka. And there were many other bits just glimpsed in the three-and-a-half-minute trailer. “There are things designed to hit you immediately,” Filoni said at a press conference following the panel. “As you watch a trailer over and over, if they’re designed well, the are layers and there are things you see and you get a little more out of it. It keeps you engaged.” While he wasn’t elaborating too […]
Feb. 25, 2015 | 11:00 a.m.

‘Ultimate Spider-Man: Web Warriors’ is bringing the Spider-Verse to TV

Spider-Girl,  Spider-Pig, Miles Morales, Spider-Man, Spider-Man Noir in the "The Spider-Verse: Part Four" episode of "Marvel's Ultimate Spider-Man: Web Warriors." (Marvel)
'Marvel's Ultimate Spider-Man: Web Warriors' is bringing the Spider-verse from the comic book world to TV
Feb. 12, 2015 | 4:41 p.m.

‘Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero’ creators flash back to ’80s on Disney XD

Sashi (Tania Gunadi), Penn (Thomas Middleditch) and Boone (Adam DeVine) make up the central trio in the new series, "Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero." (Disney XD)
Jared Bush and Sam Levine, the creators of Disney XD’s “Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero,” drew inspiration from childhood memories to craft the new animated series. At the age of 12, Bush discovered that his parents worked for the Central Intelligence Agency, while Levine, the child of a New York City film projectionist, would routinely sit beside his father to watch classic movies and new releases. ———— FOR THE RECORD In an earlier version of this article, it was stated that Alfred Molina and Larry Wilmore were either guest stars or recurring actors. They are both regular cast members on the show. ———— “One of my favorites was ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark,'” Levine said in a recent interview. “I remember watching it four times back to back, and covering my eyes every time the faces melted off at the end.” Those […]
Jan. 29, 2015 | 8:00 a.m.

‘Tales from Earthsea,’ ‘Porco Rosso,’ ‘Pom Poko’ out on Blu-ray Feb. 3

Sparrowhawk in a scene from "Tales from Earthsea." (Nibariki - GNDHDDT)
Studio Ghibli fans can add three new films to their collections. Walt Disney Studios is releasing “Tales from Earthsea,” “Porco Rosso” and “Pom Poko” on Blu-ray on Feb. 3. “Tales from Earthsea,” based on the fantasy book series by Ursula K. Le Guin and directed by Goro Miyazaki (“From Up on Poppy Hill”), is set in a mythical world thrown out of balance. Crops are dwindling, humanity is descending into chaos, and dragons have reappeared. The story follows master wizard Sparrowhawk (voiced by Timothy Dalton) and troubled Prince Arren (Matt Levin) as they search for the mysterious force that threatens their world. The dub also includes the voice talents of Mariska Hargitay, Willem Dafoe and Cheech Marin. The Blu-ray release features bonus material, including the original Japanese storyboards, trailers and TV spots, and behind-the-scenes featurettes. Tuesday’s release marks the first […]
Jan. 08, 2015 | 10:21 a.m.

Exclusive ‘Song of the Sea’ images tease magic, folklore

A scene from "Song of the Sea." (Cartoon Saloon / GKids)
“Song of the Sea,” an animated film inspired by the Irish legend of the Selkies, arrives in Los Angeles theaters on Friday. Hero Complex readers get an exclusive first look at some images from the film, the sophomore release from the creators of 2009’s Oscar-nominated film “The Secret of Kells.” In gorgeous, hand-drawn animation, “Song of the Sea” tells the tale of the last seal-child, Saoirse, and her brother Ben, who must race against time on a journey to awaken Saoirse’s powers and save the magical spirit world. Though not a sequel to “Kells,” which offered a magical origin story for Ireland’s treasured Book of Kells, “Song of the Sea” is a sort of spiritual follow-up, director Tomm Moore has said. The idea for the film was born during production on “Kells” on the west coast of Ireland, where Moore […]
Dec. 05, 2014 | 8:58 a.m.

Holiday gift guide: ‘Hobbit,’ Batman, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’ more

Hero Complex Holiday Gift Guide 2014
Ho, Ho, Ho(dor)! It’s the time of year for geek-friendly holiday shopping. Whether you’re shopping for fans of “Game of Thrones,” “Star Wars,” Batman or Captain Marvel, the annual Hero Complex holiday gift guide has you covered. This year’s selections include some family-friendly video games for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Wii U; gorgeous hardcover books celebrating the anniversaries of Marvel Comics, Batman, the Teen Titans, “Alien” and Hello Kitty; a Godzilla toy that’s probably bigger than your dog; and a quadcopter camera drone, among other selections. Click through the gallery above for a peek at our selections. Items are listed below, sorted by cost. Under $25 “Living Language Dothraki,” $3.99 app, $19.99 audiobook, $30 online course: Athchomar chomakaan! The Khal or Khaleesi in your life must command the Dothraki language before commanding the troops, and thanks to Living Language’s new course (offered as an app, CD and guide […]
Nov. 21, 2014 | 2:52 p.m.

‘Star Wars': Vader is triumphant in Lego’s ‘New Yoda Chronicles’ video

Darth on Disney XD
“Star Wars” headlines are in no short supply these days. The Star Wars Celebration will be in Anaheim next year, “Star Wars: The Clone Wars: The Lost Missions” was just released on video, and fans are salivating over any tidbit offered about J.J. Abrams‘ “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” But for those who want a fun fix of Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader and the rest, Lego Star Wars has been offering up a different take on George Lucas’ vision under the title of “The New Yoda Chronicles.” Above is an exclusive clip from “Clash of the Skywalkers,” the final chapter in the four-part “Yoda” series. The comedic tales are set in the prequel universe and feature Jedi Master Yoda in new adventures. The Emperor sends Vader to destroy Luke, while Yoda leads Jedi and padawans in a fight to stop […]
Nov. 11, 2014 | 10:36 a.m.

‘Strange Magic': Lucasfilm musical based on ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’

Bog King (Alan Cumming), Griselda (Maya Rudolph) and Marianne (Evan Rachel Wood) are part of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps in "Strange Magic." (Lucasfilm)
“Strange Magic,” a musical animated feature film inspired by William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” is coming to theaters in January, Disney announced Tuesday. The news comes after much speculation that the film would be a sequel to Disney’s record-breaking blockbuster “Frozen.” The rumor mill appears to have gotten it wrong, with nary a snowman in sight. Instead, the project — from Lucasfilm and Touchstone Pictures — is inspired by Shakespeare’s magical comedy and based on a story by “Star Wars” mastermind George Lucas, and will feature modern-day pop songs (Electric Light Orchestra, anyone?). Here’s the official description from Disney: “Strange Magic” is a madcap fairy tale musical inspired by “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Popular songs from the past six decades help tell the tale of a colorful cast of goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their hilarious misadventures sparked […]
Nov. 07, 2014 | 4:06 p.m.

‘Big Hero 6′: Writing group Man of Action recalls Disney movie roots

The four writers of Man of Action are, from left, Joe Kelly, Duncan Rouleau, Steven T. Seagle and Joe Casey. (Man of Action)
“Big Hero 6,” Disney Animation’s latest theatrical feature, is a classic superteam origin story. But what’s interesting is that the characters’ original creators function as a kind of superteam themselves. The writing collective known as Man of Action is credited on screen with the characters of “Big Hero 6,” but in reality the group consists of four individual writers: Steven T. Seagle, Duncan Rouleau, Joe Casey and Joe Kelly. They have distinct points of view, but together they share everything: both the glory and the workload. “We have a very socialist business model,” says Seagle, who co-created the “Big Hero 6″ characters with Rouleau for Marvel back in 1998. “It shocks and appalls a lot of people. At first we were all skeevy about it, whether that would work in Capitalist America, but it’s really panned out pretty well.” The […]
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