Nickelodeon, the number one producer of television animation in the U.S., announced today that it will establish The Nickelodeon Endowed Scholarship in Animation in Honor of Jules Engel at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) School of Film/Video. The announcement was made by Brown Johnson, President, Animation for Nickelodeon and MTV Network Kids’ & Family Group during the Jules Engel Centennial Celebration at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater) in Los Angeles. The endowment, which will provide support to students in both the Character and Experimental Animation Programs marks the first endowed corporate scholarship in Animation for CalArts’ prestigious School of Film/Video.
“This is a very meaningful partnership for us,” said Johnson. “CalArts has helped shape some of the most creative minds in the animation business, including many of our Nicktoon creators, directors, designers and writers. We believe that our partnership with this prestigious institution will create a greater collaboration between our studio and the industry.”
“We are thrilled to work with Nickelodeon in establishing an endowed scholarship at CalArts that supports both the Character and Experimental Animation programs. Nickelodeon’s visionary approach and leadership in animation and children’s entertainment is perfectly aligned with the Institute’s mission and aesthetic,” said Steven D. Lavine, president of CalArts. “We look forward to expanding our partnership in the years to come.”
Nickelodeon and CalArts plan to also partner in various ways on learning and development initiatives, including inviting animators from the Nicktoons studio to teach and attend classes at CalArts, hiring interns from the CalArts student pool and creating programs to share experimental animation techniques and partner on creative problem solving.
CalArts is one of the world’s premier colleges for the study and practice of the art of the moving image and it has graduated some of the entertainment industry’s most notable, innovative talents including Brad Bird (The Incredibles), Tim Burton (Batman), Stephen Hillenburg (SpongeBob SquarePants), Paul Tibbitt (SpongeBob SquarePants), John Lasseter (Toy Story), Butch Hartman (The Fairly OddParents), Erik Wiese (The Mighty B!), Jorge Gutierrez (El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera), Brett Haaland (The Penguins of Madagascar), Jeff DeGrandis (Dora the Explorer), Dan Schier (Go Diego, Go!), Alan Smart (SpongeBob SquarePants), Craig McCracken (Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends), Don Cheadle (Crash), Ed Harris (The Truman Show), Paul Reubens (Pee-wee’s Playhouse), and Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation), among others.
About CalArts School of Film/Video:
The School of Film/Video is unique in that it promotes the production of all major types of film and video work: dramatic, narrative, documentary, experimental live-action, character-based animation, experimental animation, multimedia, live performance and installation.
CalArts is recognized internationally as a leading laboratory for the visual, performing, media and literary arts. Housing six schools–Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater–CalArts educates professional artists in an intensive learning environment founded on art making excellence, creative experimentation, cross-pollination among diverse artistic disciplines, and a broad context of social and cultural understanding. CalArts also operates the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT) in the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex in downtown Los Angeles.
About Nickelodeon Animation Studios:
Nickelodeon Animation Studios opened in March 1998 in Burbank, Calif., and marked the establishment of Nickelodeon’s first production facility on the West Coast. As the first television animation studio to open in Los Angeles in 35 years, the studio is a landmark for both Nickelodeon and Hollywood. The 120,000 square foot facility is jam-packed with artists who have at their fingertips the latest in state-of-the-art equipment and technology. In July of 2007, the studio added a new CG department which continues to push the boundaries of television animation with innovative rigging and lighting techniques that are raising the bar for CG television animation industry-wide. Currently, there are eleven animated series in production at the Nickelodeon Animation Studios, including contemporary classics such as SpongeBob SquarePants, The Fairly OddParents, Back At The Barnyard, The Mighty B! starring Amy Poehler and Nick’s most recent hit The Penguins of Madagascar in partnership with DreamWorks Animation SKG, as well as upcoming Nicktoon series, Fanboy and Chum Chum.