Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Sitges Fantasy Festival

It's interesting that within the last decade there's been an explosion of "fantasy" film festivals.  There's one in Paris, one in Canada, one in Austin, TX - but to me the granddaddy is in Sitges, Spain.  Its official name is Sitges Festival Internacional de Cinema Fantastic de Catalunya, and it's located in a beautiful seaside village, just south of Barcelona.

I've been attending this festival for a number of years - they have great international guests, like Guillermo del Toro and Quentin Tarantino, among many others.  This year they hosted Eli Roth, Alejandro Jodorowsky (of "El Topo" fame), and also Terry Gilliam ("The Zero Theorem"). 

I took the wonderful opportunity to have the world premiere of my new feature "Cheatin'" at Sitges.

Unfortunately, they put me in a smaller venue, but as a result, I had a packed house that was very enthusiastic.  The Spanish are very big fans of my work because they understand my dark, transgressive humor.  There were large bursts of applause and laughter throughout the screening and a great ovation at the end.  I greeted the audience after and they all seemed to love the movie.

So now I feel a lot more confident in the future success of "Cheatin'".

If you love great fantasy films, wonderful gourmet food and beautiful beaches full of naked women, then I suggest you enter the Sitges Fantasy Film Festival.  I give Sitges an "A".

Bill Plympton

                               Bill with Angel Sala, Director of the Sitges Fantasy Festival.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Obscure Namesakes #9

Obscure Namesakes #8

Monday, October 21, 2013

New York Comic Con 2013

The New York Comic Con just keeps getting bigger and bigger!  The attendance now is very close to the Granddaddy of Cons, San Diego.  In fact, the number I heard for NYCC was 130,000 attendees, and San Diego maxes out at 125,000. 

But I like New York Comic Con because it's so easy for me to get to, and I don't need to rent a hotel room.  The flavor of the New York Comic Con is also different, NYCC seems to have more video games and merchandise, while San Diego has more Hollywood stars and films (naturally) and more artists.
                              Harry Knowles from "Ain't It Cool News" stopped by our booth!

Visiting Peter Kuper ("Spy vs. Spy") in Artists Alley

I got to visit a lot of my buddies at NYCC, like Peter Kuper, Geof Darrow, Bob Fingerman, Larry Hama, and Bob Camp (of "Ren & Stimpy").  I also did a presentation from my new feature film CHEATIN' (I showed the trailer) and talked about the Kickstarter campaign.

                                      With Geof Darrow ("Hard-Boiled", "Shaolin Cowboy")

                                  Hanging with Larry Hama ("G.I. Joe", "Wolverine", "Venom")

                                            With Bob Camp, co-creator of "Ren & Stimpy"

Then I invited everyone up to the booth to get a free drawing and to check out the the new "Dogs & Cows" DVD - plus some cool color prints from the soon-to-be-finished CHEATIN'. 

       With Jim Salicrup, former Marvel Comics editor ("Uncanny X-Men", "Amazing Spider-Man")

                                                   With Rob Bruce of "Comic Book Men"

It was great to see all of my fans, and the crazy sexy costumes (we were across the aisle from Spicy Magazine, and the gorgeous Yaya Han).  So, it was hard to concentrate on work and to spread the word about CHEATIN'.

                                                            Yaya Han as Power Girl

Zatanna and Catwoman came by the booth...                                         ....and so did Black Cat!

I give the New York Comic Con a B+.

                           With the crew of Booth #2944, John Holderried and James Hancock.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Woodstock Film Festival

After I missed the Woodstock Festival last year because of the birth of my son, Lucas, I was anxious to return to one of my favorite festivals.  And this year, I was offering something special, something more than the usual "Bill and Signe Animation Show".

I wanted to test a rough cut of my new feature film, "Cheatin'".  But if I had put it in the program as a finished film, that would have disqualified the film from screening in the larger festivals, like Sundance, Berlin and Tribeca. 

So the film screened in Woodstock under the "Surprise Film" listing in the program.  All we said in the catalog was "It's like a Disney film, but don't bring the kids."

We got a half-full audience of about 50 brave people willing to take a chance on a surprise screening.  And after, the response was excellent.  A lot of people couldn't stop talking about it, and one guy said it was the best film at the festival.

Because I was with my wife and son, I wasn't able to attend all of the screenings that I wanted to.  But I did get to see "Running From Crazy", the wonderful documentary by Barbara Kopple about the tragic Hemingway family.

The highlight of the festival was the annual BMI dinner, where I got to talk with Stephen Dorff and Peter Bogdanovich, and his lovely companion Louise (the sister of Dorothy Stratten, whose tragic life was made into the feature film "Star 80"). 

Signe and I gave the animation prize to Daniel Sousa for his wonderful film "Feral". 

I'd like to thank the Woodstock Inn at the Millstream for their terrific hospitality.  It's the best hotel in Woodstock!  Incidentally, I give the Woodstock Film Festival an "A-" and you should all enter your animated shorts to this great festival!

Obscure Namesakes #7

Obscure Namesakes #6

Monday, October 14, 2013

San Sebastian Film Festival

I've been to the beautiful city of San Sebastian a number of times. Always as a guest of the San Sebastian Horror and Fantasy festival, which I thoroughly enjoy. The Spanish have a great love of the weird and macabre, maybe that's why I'm so popular there.

But I've always dreamed of attending the main San Sebastian festival, which is the largest Spanish speaking festival in the world.  Fortunately this year, the main festival created a side program called "Animatopia", which spotlighted the greatest independent features from the last 20 years.  They selected "Hair High" and also used the "Hair High" image for their poster.

If you haven't been to San Sebastian, you should really check it out. It was at one time a vacation spot for Spanish royalty. It's a lovely harbor with a pristine beach surrounded by Grand Epoque architecture of long-ago splendor.  The old city is a maze of great restaurants and bars that people cruise long into the night.

The big event for me was opening night. And since I was the figurehead for Animatopia, I was selected to give the opening speech.  As I was waiting to go on, in the "green room", Annette Bening sat down beside me. She had her film there and was also selected to give a speech. She was very nice to me although she had no idea about what I did.

Then they escorted me up to the staging area where I ran into my good buddy, Terry Gilliam.  However, he was too busy chatting with Michelle Yeoh to notice me.  Finally, after my speech when I came off stage, he gave me a big hug and we chatted very quickly until he was asked to go on.

So I was left with the beautiful Michelle Yeoh, who is as nice as can be.  We began to chat and she talked about her experience making the film The Lady, which is about Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma. What a delightful conversation it was!

I give the San Sebastian Film Festival an A, go if you ever get a chance.


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bill Plympton at New York Comic Con

Hey, Bill Plympton fans! Now is your chance to meet the weird and wonderful Bill Plympton in person, in the living flesh. Yes, he is going to make a rare public appearance!  And where will that be, you may ask?

At The New York Comic Con, Oct. 10th - 13th at the Jacob Javits Center!

So rush yourselves over to booth #2944. If you're extremely lucky, you'll get to see Mr. Plympton signing autographs, and if you're exceedingly lucky, he may even do a sketch for you, for free!
But wait, that's not all: on Thursday, Oct. 10th in Room 1A08 at 4:15 pm, he'll be conducting a panel on his brand new animated feature film Cheatin', which just had an amazing test screening at the celebrated Woodstock Film Festival.

The world premiere of the trailer for Cheatin' will be shown, among other goodies.
Also, come check out his original artwork from Your Face and How to Kiss, plus some brand new lithos from his new feature Cheatin'.

So, tell your friends and come hang out at the coolest space in New York City, this weekend at the Plymptoons Booth #2944.  For more information on the event and show hours, check out

See you there!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The last interview with Janis Joplin, animated..

This is the latest episode of the PBS series "Blank on Blank" which is now airing Sunday nights after masterpiece theater on PBS.  Enjoy.