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Uli Meyer Explores Animation Underbelly Using Animo

(October 10, 2001)
Fred Bastard is rude, crude and has a talent for laziness. His devious nature and lack of decorum have led him to a life of chaos. But if things go as planned, he could be an unlikely media star. Fred is the main character in Uli Meyer Studios (London) new adult-targeted animated series, Fred Bastard. The studio used Cambridge Animation Systems Animo software to help create the series.

The premise for Fred emerged about 11 years ago when animator Uli Meyer got the idea for the series. He has spent his downtime since then establishing characters and storylines. Staff at Uli Meyer Studios spent spare time working on bits and pieces of the project, which took 18 months to finish. Animo was used for all scanning, ink and paint, and compositing.

?Animo allowed us to preserve the artists line, which was essential for Freds brush-stroke look, says Mark Farrington, producer at Uli Meyer. ?The only alternative would have been to paint each cell by hand a high-cost option. We are very aware of the obvious savings Animo allowed us, especially since there was no outside funding for the project.

Uli Meyer is currently seeking distributors and production partners to bring Fred Bastard to the web and/or television. The series pilot debuted at the Annecy Animation Festival in June. The episode follows Freds attempts to raise rent for his embittered landlady, Miss Hand-Shandy, by selling his beloved television and buying lottery tickets with the proceeds. Uli Meyer plans to enter the pilot in additional festivals and is working on future episodes, including ?Freds Holiday Trip, ?Fred at the Hospital and ?Freds Doppelganger.

Uli Meyer Studios was established 11 years ago and has produced approximately 300 commercials and worked on the feature films Space Jam, Lost in Space, and Anastasia. The studio, based in London, is a state-of-the-art animation facility with 3D, Avid and Commotion workstations.

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