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The Little Beauty King

According to insiders, in early 2001, just six months before the triumphant success of "Shrek," Thomas Schumacher vetoed a draft of Eric Goldberg's "Prince Lyagushenok", satirical adaptation of Grimm's fairy tales. It should be recognized that it is in the spirit of Hollywood. So a couple of years before that, no studio is not interested in a painted project Oedkerka Steve (Steve Oedekerk) "Little Beauty King", which was to parody the Disney classic. But "Shrek" suddenly changed the general attitude toward animation satire. And bosses mouse factory almost immediately endorsed the preparation of a computer satirical cartoon "Chicken", and ordered to turn the screen version of fairy tale "Rapunzel" in the story such as "Shrek." Even the name was coined by fashion-hooligan "Rapunzel unwound" ("Rapunzel Unbraided") Full article

UliMeyer.com: In 1999 we created charaters and scene set-ups for Steve Oedekerk's 'Little Beauty King' project. The task was designing a very 'Deisney' looking film to go with a very non-Disney story.
 
 

An archived version of ulimeyer.com has a lot of images. We are currently extracting them: source
 
  
 

In 1999 the Uli Meyer studio got involved in the visual development for a proposed film entitled “The Little Beauty King” by Steve Oedekerk. That was just before Shrek became successful. Steve’s pisstake on animated fairy tales was very crude and very funny. It never got made. Here’s the princess character singing a heartbreaking song on the loo.
This project, which was never carried out, was to be a satire of the Disney fairy tales what good does this sound? but, since it was seen that the trend towards 3D, was canceled. Ulimeyer Studios.
-http://universodisney.mforos.com/97427/4179424-little-beauty-king/
-http://ulimeyer.com/
 
Fox Animation Studios Closes Its Doors
by Brian Linder June 27, 2000

In what has been a tumultuous few days for 20th Century Fox, there's more bad news for the studio. After six years of operation, Fox Animation Studios in Phoenix, Arizona is closing its doors.¿ The closing sends the creative team of Don Bluth and Gary Goldman packing, along with the remaining 60 employees.¿¿

There were signs of trouble
earlier this year, when Fox laid off two-thirds of the originally 320-person staff at the Phoenix studio.¿ At the time the lay-offs were attributed to a desire to make films more efficiently.¿ The recent boom in independent production houses doing animated work allowed them to outsource the later-stage animated work.¿

 It's no coincidence that the closing comes just after the
dismal performance of Titan A.E. at the box office.¿ Despite an initial commitment, when the studio opened six years ago, to produce a new animated film every 18 months, Titan was only the third animated film to come out of the Phoenix operation.¿ The other films produced there were the respectable Anastasia, and its direct-to-video prequel Bartok the Magnificent.

Bluth and Goldman have always been artistically committed to their projects, and it's possible that they didn't fit in with the "assembly line" approach that Fox may have been pressuring them to take.¿ For more insight into the philosophy of Bluth and Goldman read their recent FilmForce interviews: 

This announcement follows the "resignation" of Fox Filmed Entertainment chairman and CEO Bill Mechanic, who was crucial in the development of Fox's animated ventures of late.¿¿¿

Fox Animation president Chris Meledandri was able to muster up the company-man spin. Meledandri told The Hollywood Reporter, "It's certainly disappointing news for everyone in Phoenix. We are not out of the animation business, clearly from our investment in Blue Sky and the production of Monkeybone and our other projects.¿ The marketplace has changed dramatically in the last six years, and while we were once in the business of producing animation, we found other opportunities to make different kinds of films with different kinds of filmmakers that became attractive to us."

Fox nabbed up Blue Sky/VIFX studio in New York and has transformed it from a FX house into a CG feature film studio. So it seems that Fox is out of the traditional animation business for the foreseeable future.¿ It would appear that they're putting all their eggs into the Blue Sky basket, as the studio recently brought on 150 new employees there, to being production on the film Ice Age.¿¿

Ice Age is set during the ice age no less, and tells the story of a human infant who is found by a friendly woolly mammoth (voiced by Ray Romano), a sabre-toothed tiger (Goran Visnjic), and a giant sloth (John Leguizamo).¿ The beasts' quest is to reunite the baby with his parents. Awww. How cute!¿ I can see the fast food tie-ins already!

Fox also has Blue Sky working on Monkeybone (2001), Little Beauty King, Fathom, and a Farrelly brothers picture Frisco Pigeon Mambo.¿ source

-- Brian Linder hopes DreamWorks can hang in there so someone gives the mouse a run for its money in the traditional animation genre.¿ WB...we need more "Iron Giants!"
 

Fox Animation Phoenix Burns Out
By Rick DeMott | Tuesday, June 27, 2000 at 12:00 am | AWN NewsPosted In | News Categories: Business | Geographic Region: All | Site Categories: Business

After only six years in existence, Fox has closed the doors to its Phoenix, Arizona-based animation division, subsequently ending Don Bluth and Gary Goldman’s relationship with Fox. The move comes after the recent resignation of Fox Filmed Entertainment’s chairman and CEO, Bill Mechanic, who had taken a big interest in animation and helped start the Fox facility in Phoenix. With the recent box office disappointment of TITAN A.E., the news is not much of a shock. In February, Fox laid off nearly 70% of its toon factory's staff. Moreover, the closure of Fox Phoenix comes at the same time Fox-owned CG house Blue Sky Studios begins production on Chris Wedge’s ICE AGE. The long talked about feature is Fox’s first attempt at transforming its New York-based effects house into a CG animation studio. Chris Meledandri, 20th Century Fox Animation president, said in the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, "We are not out of the animation business, clearly from our investment in Blue Sky and the production of MONKEYBONE and our other projects. The marketplace has changed dramatically in the last six years, and while we were once in the business of producing animation, we found other opportunities to make different kinds of films with different kinds of filmmakers that became attractive to us." Last year, Fox purchased Blue Sky and set up the studio to work on effects for Henry Selick’s MONKEYBONE, a stop motion feature based on the cult comic book. Since then Fox has signed deals with Steve Oedekerk (Thumb.com) and Peter and Bobby Farrelly (THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY). Oedekerk will develop two films entitled THE DUBBED ACTION MOVIE: ENTER THE FIST and LITTLE BEAUTY KING, while the Farrelly Brothers are set to produce the film FRISCO PIGEON MAMBO. In addition, the studio is in the planning stages of adapting FATHOM, a Top Cows comic book, into a feature film. source
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