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From Balloon Guy to Bluesky – Interview Chris Wedge

Title: From Balloon Guy to Bluesky
Sponsored by Bluesky Animation Studios
Length: 45 min

Description: Join me in welcoming to the CTN animation eXpo in this rare exclusive opportunity to meet, see and hear about the amazing career of Oscar® winning film director, producer, and co-founder of Blue Sky Studios Chris Wedge.

Moderator Bill Kroyer is an award-winning director of animation and computer graphics commercials, short films, movie titles and theatrical films. Trained in classic hand-drawn animation at the Disney Studio, Bill was one of the first animators to make the leap to computer animation as Computer Image Choreographer on Disney’s ground-breaking 1982 feature, “Tron.” Founding his own company, Kroyer Films, Inc., Bill and his wife Susan pioneered the technique of combining hand-drawn animation with computer animation. Bill was Director of such projects as his Academy Award® nominated short film “Technological Threat” and the theatrical animated feature film “FernGully: The Last Rainforest”. Bill is currently Senior Animation Director at Rhythm & Hues Studios in Los Angeles, where he supervised animation “Garfield”, “Scooby Doo”, “Cats & Dogs” and “The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas.” He has directed animation in commercials for Cox Communications, Novell, AT&T, Cheetos, Hankook, and the Coca Cola Polar Bears. Bill’s animation has won awards at festivals all over the world. He serves on the Executive Board of the Animation Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. Join Bill at CTN-X 09 where his will be joined by other experts in from 2D, 3D and VFX as he hosts some engaging round table discussion on the subject of animations.

Chris Wedge is an Oscar® winning film director, producer, and co-founder of Blue Sky Studios. He is the driving force behind the company’s high standard of visual storytelling and character animation. This, along with the studio’s commitment to research and development, has brought Blue Sky to prominence as one of the top computer animation studios in the world.
Beginning his career as a stop-motion animator, Wedge later joined MAGI/SynthaVision, where he was one of the principal animators for the groundbreaking Disney movie TRON (1982). He directed the character animation sequences for the Warner Bros./Geffen Films Production JOE’S APARTMENT (1996), and served as Creative Supervisor on numerous feature films and commercials.
Wedge wrote and directed Blue Sky’s first film, the touching short, BUNNY (1998), which won an Academy Award® for Best Animated Short Film.  It was first film to use radiosity, Blue Sky’s own advanced ambient lighting technology. In addition to winning the Academy Award, Bunny has won more than 25 international awards for animation excellence.  Wedge went on to direct Blue Sky’s first two computer-generated animated feature films; ICE AGE (2002), nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Animated Feature Film, and ROBOTS (2005).  He was the Executive Producer of ICE AGE: THE MELTDOWN (2006), DR. SEUSS’ HORTON HEARS A WHO (2008) and, most recently, ICE AGE: THE MELTDOWN (2009) which grossed over 880 million dollars.  He is currently directing THE LEGEND OF THE LEAFMEN.
Chris is a 1981 graduate of the SUNY Purchase film department.  He received his Master of Arts degree in Computer Graphics and Art Education from the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design (formerly  CGRG), under Ohio State University.

Chris Wedge is an Oscar® winning film director, producer, and co-founder of Blue Sky Studios. He is the driving force behind the company’s high standard of visual storytelling and character animation. This, along with the studio’s commitment to research and development, has brought Blue Sky to prominence as one of the top computer animation studios in the world.

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