Missing Links: Will Vinton, Usagi Yojimbo, Ghostbusters, Guardians

Posted 6 years ago by Missing Links

Missing Links

How the Father of Claymation Lost His Company
I’ve been a huge fan of stop-motion/claymation since I was a very little kid, and Will Vinton has always been one of my favorites. I was vagely aware of what happened when his studio was taken over by Phil Knight of Nike fame, but I didn’t know the whole story. It’s pretty incredible what happened to him, but it has to be said, would films like Coraline and ParaNorman have been made if the change didn’t happen? I think Laika has a bright future but it sucks that Vinton got booted from his own company.

Watch Stop-Motion ‘Usagi Yojimbo’ Short Film
This short is rough, but it was just used as a proof-of-concept for the filmmakers to get the rights to Usagi Yojimbo to make a stop-motion animated feature. I love stop-motion and I love Usagi Yojimbo (through his TMNT connection of course) so this is pretty awesome.

How Laika Pushed 3D Printing to New Heights with ‘The Boxtrolls’
I love that 3D printing is helping keep stop-motion animation alive. Laika’s movies are great and I can’t wait to see the Boxtrolls.

See the Ghostbusters Ride That Was Never Built
This would have been a really fun ride.

Inside the Wild UI Design of Guardians of the Galaxy
I love when a sci-fi movie has a great UI design, and Guardians certainly did. Beyond the screens and holograms that we’re used to seeing, it had some amazingly weird “UI” in Ronan’s ships. Just another thing that this movie did right.

TMNT Pizza Crunchabungas Claymation Commercial

Posted 8 years ago by Television

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have had some crazy merchandise over the years, but one that has a particularly interesting following is a snack from the early 90s. Yes, I’m talking about Pizza Crunchabungas, the pizza-flavored corn snacks. The reason this random TMNT tie-in has a following with fans is because it was marketed with a very cool commercial. The commercial was the only time the Turtles were animated in Claymation, and it was done by master animator Will Vinton of California Raisins fame.

I looked for this commercial on YouTube whenever I thought about it, but for some reason I never found it until now. The turtles look awesome in claymation form, and I wish we could have had a whole series (or at least a special) done in this style. I’d love to see Krang, Bebop, and Rocksteady in stop-motion.

If you want to learn more about Pizza Crunchabungas (why wouldn’t you?) you should read Matt’s definitive article at XE from a few years ago, and also check out Tokka’s video and painted model photos on Flickr.