news/reviews digest


Renegade makes Funny Face

The Funny Face characters could be making their way to TV. The characters originally were featured on Pillsbury drink packets in the 1960s and '70s. Renegade Animation has obtained the rights to the Funny Face characters from Carson Creations to produce an animated series. It will be aimed at kids 6-11 and will recall the animation style and the spirit of such classics as "Tom & Jerry" and Looney Tunes. Renegade is producing a pilot episode while seeking distribution and licensing agreements.

AT&T sets MediaFLO bow

NEW YORK — AT&T said Thursday that it will launch its long-anticipated mobile TV service from Qualcomm's MediaFLO USA in May. AT&T Mobile TV with FLO will feature full-length and sports content from Comedy Central and Nickelodeon, NBC, CBS, ESPN and Fox. The service also will feature two channels exclusive to AT&T. Specifics were not available but AT&T said more announcements would be made soon. The service will be available to AT&T subscribers in select markets in May on the new LG Vu and Samsung Access handsets.

NBC joins mixed martial arts league

NBC is getting into the mixed martial arts genre. The network has ordered a new mixed martial arts series as a companion for its late-night "Poker After Dark" program. "Strikeforce on NBC" will premiere April 12 and is billed as the first weekly mixed martial arts series to air on broadcast television. The half-hour program will air from 2-2:30 a.m. CBS also is getting into the genre, with four "CBS EliteXC Saturday Night Fights" specials scheduled to debut on Saturday nights starting May 31. G4 also is developing a mixed martial arts series hosted by fighter Tito Ortiz.

Catmull among Siggraph's features

Ed Catmull, Pixar Animation Studios co-founder and Academy Award-winning computer graphics innovator, will be a featured speaker at Siggraph 2008, the 35th International Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques. Catmull is president of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. He won one of the architects of Renderman rendering software.