Even with the combination of computer-generated animation and traditional hand-drawn animation, the basics are still the same.
Atlantis in Depth
“The basic components and the basic endeavor have not changed for what I do in the last 75 years,” Pomeroy noted. “It is how I draw a provocative performance and make something out of nothing that can entertain you as the viewer.”
While technological advancements to some degree have helped speed up the process (they no longer have to wait five days to process test footage), the final product is still only as good as the people holding the pencil or sitting at the keyboard.
Pomeroy sees the latest computerized animation tools as having merely opened the door to new challenges. The technology has allowed them to focus more on developing the craft of animated acting and breaking down other barriers.
Hahn adds, “It’s a real stew – and more and more so. When I started out ages ago, it was guys sitting down with pencil and paper and creating performances. Now you have all this technology that comes to bear on this movie and you also have an audience that’s so visually literate now and comes to the movie with so much information already from their lives. Kids are so sophisticated that it’s just a different medium.”
That medium is now facing head-to-head competition not only from other animated fare, such as Shrek, but films like Star Wars, Tomb Raider, and Men In Black, films that from a certain point of view are also animated films because of their reliance on special effects. “Those distinctions of ‘you’re just a cartoon’ are blurring and over the next 10 years they’ll be gone probably,” Hahn said.