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Toonhound presents...






       July 2006
 Extra! Extra! - Read all the Toon News!

       A little more Flushed
   Flushed Away's new trailer...

       Wisper, Wisper

   Willo the Wisp on
     Playhouse Disney...  

   The Flanimals are coming!...

    When there was a DVD
 Roobarb and Custard Too...

    HIT films
 Bob and Angelina at UK cinemas!...

    Self-promotion ahoy!
 Captain Pedigree sets sail...

    Pigeon fancier
 Pigeon Street prints are coming...

    The final stutter

 RIP Peter Hawkins...

.   Hot work
   Heavy weather for The Hound...   more »

      news archive »     interviews »      giveaways »

   When there was a DVD  (31.07.06)

    "Roobarb and Custard Too" has finally escaped on DVD. Ten episodes
    of the all-new-but-so-similar-you-can't-see-the-join series can be
    found on Roobarb and Custard Too: Here Comes Trouble, which
    was released by Pathe a week-or-so ago.

      Roobarb abnd Custard Too - on DVD now!

    The new series is directed by Jason Tammemagi and you may recall
    that The Hound had a little chat with him last year, when it launched
    on the UK's Five channel.
Roobarb wobbles and wiggles just like he
    used to. There's even Richard Briers doing the voices...

    We seem to be in the middle of a new wave of toon revivals right now,
    because alongside Roobarb there's the all-new "Willo the Wisp", Maverick's
    new Muffin the Mule toon, cgi "Captain Scarlet" (which appears to have
    come and gone now - sadly), Postman Pat and "Fireman Sam" and coming
    soon we have Pinky and Perky, Bleep and Booster, and Rupert Bear.

    Many folks cuss and tut at the thought of so many revivals. But to
    be honest, most of the ones we had in recent years have been tiptop
    quality - Roobarb being the perfect example. It's instantly familiar to
    folks of a certain age, but updated with just enough modern references
to bring in to the noughties....
Roobarb and Custard


   HIT films  (28.07.06)

    Goodness me. Did you know that Bob the Builder and Angelina
    Ballerina are both playing across UK cinema screens, right now?

    No, neither did The Hound until a jolly email from Bob's co-director
    Geoff Walker landed in his Inbox. You'd certainly be hard-pressed to
    find much mention of it in the media, but on July 8th, HIT Entertainment
    released their "Family Bonanza" films in selected Odeon cinemas.

     Bob the Builder - Built to be Wild!

    On Saturdays Bob has been starring in his new feature film
    "Built to be Wild", and on Sundays, Angelina has starred in "Angelina
    Sets Sail". Not only that, but our poop-pooping penguin pal Pingu
    has also popped up alongside them, in new mini-adventures.
    But this fab news seems to have been lost somewhere between 
    those cinematic pirates, high-flying superheroes, cgi cars,
    head-butting footballers and a baking hot July.

    Let's start with Bob.

    "Built to be Wild" is co-directed by Geoff Walker and Jackie Cockle.
    It's billed as a musical adventure which sees Bob and the gang taking
    a vacationto the Wild West of America. They travel to the one-horse town
    of Cactus Creek, where they explore a gold mine, share campfire tales
    and track down a long-lost treasure. And this being a Bob the Builder special,
    there are several special guest stars too. This time we have Suzi Quatro
    as a rottin' tootin' cowgirl called Rio, who rides a horse called Dollar.
    And hold on to your hearts girls, because Donny Osmond is the
    voice of her big blue talking jeep called Jackaroo!

    It's very easy to be cynical about these kind of productions, but the
    Bob the Builder specials have always been that little bit - well - special.
    The team at HOT Animation have lavished each one with attention, and
    detail. They're certainly not just extended episodes. They feel like proper
    little movies. Which is precisely why the first A Christmas to Remember,
    picked itself up a BAFTA.
And precisely why it's so exciting to see
    this new film geting the Big Screen treatment

    As for Angelina, well in "Angelina Sets Sail" she and her mousling
    pals are sailing to Dacovia for a special performance. There's an onboard
    romance that needs Angelina's asistance, and a titanic intervention looming
    on the horizon. But fear not folks, this isn't a disaster movie. Angelina's
    iceberg serves merely as the cataylst for True Love. Once again Ginger
    Gibbons and Grand Slamm have steered the mice through the
    production process...

    HIT's "Family Bonanza" is still playing until August 6th. The Odeon
    web site has the screening info for you. But if you're like me a) far too
    old to go to kids' matinees without untoward questions being asked, 
    or b) simply too far from your local Odeon (mine's 100+ miles away,
    since the Aberdeen one closed), you'll be glad to hear that both films
    will be getting the DVD treatment in good time for christmas. And
    needless to say, these being HIT Entertainment releases, there
    are lots of tie-in toys forthcoming too!...

                                    More: Built to be Wild  Odeon Cinemas


   Self-promotion ahoy!  (24.07.06)

    Oky, so this little site usually promotes other folks' characters and
    creations, but - darnit - your faithful Hound also has his own uncontrollable
    urge to doodle and create. And so he presents for your - er - pleasure,
    Captain Brutus Alexander Pedigree and a host of Sea-Dogs, Catthroats
    and Coarsehairs, who have just embarked on their first adventure!

    Set sail for adventure with Captain Pedigree!

    I've put together a little mini-site here, including the first eight pages
    for your persual. Pedigree's been riding the waves in my head for several
    years - way-y-y before a certain film came to light - but I thought I'd finally
    cast off online, so to speak.

    Imagine Hornblower with dogs, if you will. I've several extended tales
    to tell, and in my daydreams I can imagine a series of graphic novels,
    sitting on the shelves of Ottakar's, a range of collectible figures,
    and even a CGI feature - *sigh*.

    Okay, okay. So that's not gonna happen. But if you happen to be
    a publisher/agent/producer/moneyman-or-woman who wants to talk,
    well, let's talk. And if you're just a regular visitor, I'd still appreciate
    your feedback. Should I stick to the day job, or keep on doodling?

Captain Pedigree


   Pigeon Fancier  (19.07.06)

    If you're a Pigeon Street fan, you'll be cooing when you hear that
    Lollipop Animation are today releasing a rather splendid quartet of
    pigeon prints for our delight.

     Pigeon Street prints from Lollipop Animation!

    Lollipop are hosting "The Art of Pigeon Street", at Hurst House in
    London's Covent Garden tonight, from 6pm to 9pm. 13 original works
    of art will be on display for the first time ever, plus those four exclusive
    "Pigeon Street" prints will be unveiled. What's more, Alan Rogers of
    Cut-Out Animation will be there to meet and greet visitors, and to
    sign the prints which will also be available through Lollipop's
    lickable site!

    The prints measure 11" x 14" in size, with 20cm x 28cm image size.
    And the signed editioins are just £20 each, which means they should
    be in reach of even the very poorest of fans. Although they're being
    kept under wraps until the launch, The Hound has been given a
    sneaky-peek, and he has to say they look terrific...

                                                     More: Lollipop Animation


   The final stutter  (18.07.06)

    So sad to hear that Peter Hawkins has passed on. For many, he
    was the voice of teatime tv, having loaned his talents to so very many
    top toons. That stuttering starfish, Captain Pugwash floats to the surface
    of his lengthy CV, alongside those Flowerpot Men, Bill and Ben, whose
    fabulous Oddle-Poddle language he invented.

     Peter Hawkins narrating Captain Pugwash  

    Peter was the narrator for "SuperTed" and "Bleep& Booster". He was
    Sir Prancelot, Nelly in "Noah & Nelly", Dennis in "Penny Crayon", BH in
    "The Perishers". He was Jimbo's Chief, Angus in "The Family-Ness",
    Samson Snail in "Toucan Tecs", and oh-so many more. "Dr Who" fans
    will be no doubt be in mourning too, because Peter was the original
    voice of the Daleks and the Cybermen.

    He'd retired from the limelight some time ago, and died on July 8th
    after a long illness...


   A little more Flushed  (12.07.06)

    If you're hankering for a little more of "Flushed Away", you'll find
    a slightly new International trailer to view right here:

     Flushed Away - Roddy and Syd

             Quicktime: low - mid - high
           Real Media: low - mid - high
    Windows Media: low - mid - high

    There are a few little tweaks and edits from the earlier promo, but
    most noticably this one has its eye on the recent World Cup, with a
    footy game playing on Roddy's penthouse TV. I'm not sure if it really
    adds anything to the mix. Indeed, it feels a tad clunky to this particular
    viewer. But it gives us an excuse to catch up with Roddy and
    pals once more...

    When it comes to stop-motion, Aardman are in a Premier League
    all on their own. But "Flushed Away" pitches them into the rough
    and tumble world of CGI football (albeit with DreamWorks in goal).
    Let's hope they stay afloat!

    "Flushed Away" opens 3rd November 2006.
Flushed Away


   Wisper, Wisper  (05.07.06)

     Bobbi Spargo has dropped us a line this week. As most folks know,
     she's the daughter of the late Nick Spargo, animator and creator
     of Willo the Wisp and friends, and she's the lady who sowed the
     seeds for their welcome return with James Dreyfus rolling his
     "ahhhhs" and elongating his "ooohs" in place of the late great
     Kenneth Williams...

      Edna's gone all widescreen in the new Willo the Wisp!

     Well, Bobbi just wanted to remind us all that the all-new Willo show
     (complete with widescreen Evil Edna), is currently airing three times a day
     on Playhouse Disney UK, which is jolly good news indeed. And it means
     there's no excuse for folks to miss out on its broadcast...

     Um, that is unless you don't have cable or satellite tv. But never fear,
     Silva Screen plan to release the new series on DVD, later this year!

Willo the Wisp


   Flantastic  (04.07.06)

    Ricky Gervais has had huge success with his series of Flanimals
    books, in which he presents us with a cockeyed guide to some
    craptastic creatures. Indeed, a third guide book "Flanimals of
    the Deep" will be hitting stores this Autumn, and there's an
    increasing amount of tie-in apparrel to purchase...

     Ricky Gervais' "Flanimals"

    ...But now, flanophiles everywhere will be rejoicing at the news
    that those Gernloids, Mung Unglers, Mungefuddlers and the rest are
    to be filmed for a brand new tv series. Caramel Uncut an producer
    Chris Gepp are putting the Flanimals series together in Bristol, for ITV.
    The adaptation will be written and narrated by Gervais, and the critters
    brought to life through a combination of traditional claymation techniques
    and CGI. But the very best news of all is that Boni and Berk themselves,
    Charles Mills and Terry Brain have been lured away from Aardman
    Animation to direct the 6 x 30mins production!

    Although they've worked on "Chicken Run" and "Were-Rabbit", Messrs
    Mills and Brain are best known as CMTB Animation, and together they
    brought us those beasties lurking in and around The Trapdoor, and the
    not-sobad mannerisms of Stoppit and Tidyup. They're surely the perfect
    duo to take on Gervais' bumbling beasties...

    Look out for the series next year!



   Hot work   

    Hot, isn't it? - Up here in my Elgin attic it's bloomin' roasting.
    It's too hot for dogs too. They've sought sanctuary in the bowels of
    the house, but alas I can't follow them. Putting the office up here
    made perfect sense on paper. It stays lovely and warm during our
    wild scottish winters, thanks to all our lovely insulation. But come
    the height of Summer...

    Still, this Hound's staying put and continuing to upgrade and update,
    quick as he can. My wife's just started 6.00am work shifts, so I'm able
    to ensconce myself up here before the heat gets a chance to burst
    the thermometer.

    I'd hoped to have all the TvToons pages updated by now. But time and
    again, events conspire to prevent me from reaching my goal. For starters,
    I'm knee-deep in my first proper novel and it's painfully slow work. I hate
    the writing process. I've already written this thing umpteen times over
    in my head. Now I'm... typing... it... down... It's such a chore. Mind you,
    I do get great pleasure when I go back to what I've written at a later
    date and find that, in my own humble opinion, it ain't all that bad.
    But who am I kidding? I've yet to start the pitching process, and
    I'm sure that blissful bubble will be burst very swiftly...

    Alongside the writing, there's Toonhound. One of the biggest headaches
    here stem from those darned external links. Over the years, many, many
    folks have been in touch requesting links and reviews, and if their site
    has been relevant, I've duly obliged. But you know, very few of those
    folks have ever bothered to reciprocate. And worse, a good many of
    them have moved on. They've dumped their pages, changed their URL
    or simply pulled their site altogether. And have they bothered to let
    me know? - Have they heck! Sometimes it can be very lonely on
    this one-way street to nowhere...
    Lonely, and very, very hot.

    Till next time!

        Pooch says 'Stay tooned!'

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