“Being able to thank June for all her amazing contributions to our industry is a true honor for us at Animation Magazine,” says Publisher Jean Thoren. “Her enormous talent, drive and energy are a true inspiration for everyone and will be always remembered by anyone who has a fondness for animation and all the remarkable characters she has brought to life in her career.”
Foray has lent her skills to such legendary characters as Rocky the Flying Squirrel and Natasha Fatale on The Bullwinkle Show, Cindy Lou Who from How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Granny in the Tweety and Sylvester series, and in The Bugs Bunny Show. Foray also voiced Looney Tunes’ Witch Hazel and was the voice of Jokey Smurf on The Smurfs. Born June Lucille Forer in Springfield, Mass., in 1917, Foray got into voice-over work at the age of 12, performing in a local radio drama. She moved to Los Angeles at 17 and quickly established herself as a popular radio actress on national broadcasts like Lux Radio Theater and The Jimmy Durante Show. Her first major animation role came in 1950, playing Lucifer the Cat in Walt Disney’s Cinderella. Foray also provided the voice of the original Chatty Cathy doll, and later played the Talky Tina doll it inspired in The Twilight Zone. Foray won her first Emmy in 2012 for voicing Mrs. Cauldron on The Garfield Show. This September, she was also awarded the prestigious Governor’s Awards at the Creative Emmy Award ceremony. She is also one of the key forces behind the influential Annie Awards, which have taken a leading role in honoring the best achievements in the field of animation each year.
“John Knoll is a true visionary and guiding light in the field of visual effects, technology and popular entertainment,” says Publisher Jean Thoren. “We are thrilled to honor John’s visionary leadership and multi-faceted talents at our event this year. His contributions and achievements have truly changed the entertainment landscape for the better throughout the past few decades. It’s been an honor to cover his career highlights in our magazine and an even bigger honor to have his participation at the Summit in November.”
“I am thrilled to accept this award from Animation Magazine,” stated John Knoll. “I’ve been fortunate in my career to work with some of the most creative filmmakers in the industry, as well as many of the most talented and innovative artists in the field here at ILM, and I share this award with all of them. I am truly humbled to receive this honor.”
Acclaimed for co-creating Photoshop with his brother Thomas, Knoll has been a driving force of innovation at ILM for years. In 1996 Knoll founded their Rebel (Mac) Unit; a creative incubator for fine artists and software developers to define working methodologies and advance the state of the art. This lead to the development of a variety of breakthrough techniques including some of the earliest examples of digital compositing for The Abyss, and many cutting-edge digital camera projection techniques used on such films as Mission: Impossible, Star Trek: First Contact and Star Wars: Episode I, The Phantom Menace. He was also a key contributor of the development of ILM’s pioneering on set performance capture technology, Imocap, which saw its first use on Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. More recently, he was visual effects supervisor at ILM for the Oscar-winning films Hugo, Rango, Avatar and this year’s science fiction epic Pacific Rim.
In 2012, Knoll was elected to the Academy’s Board of Governors representing the visual effects branch and is a four-time Academy Award nominee. In 2007 he won both the Oscar and the BAFTA for Best Visual Effects for his work on Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.
“It’s been an honor to report on Tapaas’s amazing achievements and international partnerships in our magazine over the past 25 years,” says Publisher JeanThoren. “Through his many animation productions at DQ Entertainment and his global charities, he has made our world a much better place, and we’re very pleased to shed light on his achievements with this special award.”
Chakravarti is responsible for the overall development, management and implementation of the studio’s various projects. He has over 25 years of experience across various industries both national and multinational and is a vital part of numerous national and international charitable organizations, which include extensive work for orphans, children with AIDS, and education for the deprived. He has been nominated for the Ernst & Young, Entrepreneur of the Year 2009 India Awards and awarded the Entrepreneur of the Year award from 2004 to 2005 by the Hyderabad Management Association. Among his many animation production credits are The Pinky and Perky Show, Twisted Whiskers, Little Nick, The Little Prince, The Jungle Book, The Hive and Casper’s Scare.
“Since the launch of the studio in 2012, the talented team at Stoopid Buddy has put their special creative stamp on several, dynamic and highly original series, produced for TV and various other platforms,” said Ramin Zahed, Editor-in-Chief of Animation Magazine. “We’re very excited to celebrate their vision and energy with our Inaugural Breakout Studio Award this November. We know that we will all be enjoying their terrific work for many years in the future.”
“Stoopid Buddy Stoodios is a dream to have built and we’re overly humbled to get recognized for building our dream,” stated John Harvatine IV. “We’re lucky to be in a position to be working with our friends who are the talented folks working with us to make this studio a reality.”
Based in Burbank, Stoopid Buddy Stoodios is the largest shop in California specializing in stop-motion animation. Well known for the upcoming seventh season of the Emmy and Annie Award-winning Robot Chicken on Cartoon Network, they have pushed traditional forms of animation to their greatest potential and beyond. Their patented “Stop-Live Animation” technique has allowed them to combine stop-motion animated characters and documentary style live-action footage. Other acclaimed projects include College Humor’s Dinosaur Office, stop-motion animated segments of Spy vs. Spy for MAD from Warner Bros. Animation for Cartoon Network, YouTube’s Stoopid Monkey channel, a feature project at Sony Pictures Animation, and a second Robot Chicken/DC Comics Special.
“DreamWorks Animation’s The Croods was the highest grossing original film of the year, and we’re very pleased to honor the brilliant writers and directors behind this animated blockbuster, which has made over $585 million worldwide to date,” said Ramin Zahed, Animation Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief. “The film’s popularity all over the world is a testament to the creativity and authentic vision of these two talented artists.”
Born into an artistic household, Chris Sanders grew up drawing and penning short stories. After studying at CalArts’ Animation Program, Sanders went on to work for Marvel Productions, and then, Walt Disney Animation Studios. While at Disney, Sanders worked as a story artist on Rescuers Down Under, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King. He was made head of story on Mulan and went on to win an Annie Award for Storyboarding in an Animated Feature Production. Following the success of Mulan, Sanders partnered with Dean DeBlois and conceived, wrote, boarded and directed the Academy Award®-nominated Lilo & Stitch.
In 2006, Sanders left Walt Disney Animation Studios to join the filmmaking team at DreamWorks Animation. Teaming again with DeBlois, the duo wrote and directed the Academy Award®-nominated How to Train Your Dragon, which won them the Annie Award for Best Directing in an Animated Feature Production.
After graduating from the University of Southern California, Kirk DeMicco’s writing and directing career began in the legendary William Morris Agency in New York City. In October of 1994, he transferred to the company’s Los Angeles office, and six months later sold his first spec screenplay, A Day in November, which Warner Bros. landed after a bidding war.
Among DeMicco’s additional studio film credits are: writer and co-producer of the Warner Bros. family feature Racing Stripes, Sherlock Homeboy for Universal Family; Hong Kong Phooey for Warner Bros. and Alcon Entertainment; and Casper: Scare School for Classic Media. DeMicco has also done production rewrites for feature films from Disney, DreamWorks, Spyglass Entertainment, and Warner Bros. He has also written two scripts with John Cleese and teamed up with filmmaker Barry Sonnenfeld as a first-time director for the animated film Space Chimps, released by Fox in July 2008.