Legislative and Executive branch

 

Juliet Bashore “beezle” - Executive Producer

 

Founding partner of Modern Cartoons Ltd, a  production company that has developed innovative hardware and software and has developed and produced projects for HBO, PBS, CBS, Sony and NBC. Produced and directed projects and shared responsibility for initiating and approving project decisions; responsible for budgets and corporate financial decisions and reporting to corporate parent.Juliet is an award-winning filmmaker and TV producer who has been involved with Mr. Film and Modern Cartoons for over ten years.

As an undergraduate she attended the University of California at Santa Cruz where she graduated with honors in Literature and Film Production. She got her Master’s Degree at the American Film Institute’s Center for Advanced Film and Television Studies, has received numerous grants and awards, and has been nominated for a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Besides Modern Cartoons, her favorite work has been producing television shows in conjunction with Channel 4 in London. She is involved in developing the more adult-oriented properties at Modern Cartoons (hates kid’s stuff), as well as working to integrate and interface the financial side of things with Modern Cartoons’ production. It’s a dirty job—but somebody has to do it.

Juliet works with Chris Walker to make the studio’s tool set useful to the end user—producers and directors.

 

Fred  Sidewater  - CFO

Fred has been instrumental in structuring the business and financing of some 100 feature films over the past 30 years. He personally initiated the concept of using advance foreign sales contracts to finance motion picture production. At Modern Cartoons Fred has handled most of the major negotiations for the many productions that the company has realized and/or is developing.

Fred has been a member of the ModernCartoons’ Board of Directors for three years, as well as consultant and CFO of Modern Cartoons. Fred also serves as a business consultant to one of Europe's major entertainment conglomerates.

 Aaron “double-a” Slavin - Executive Producer

Aaron has been working with Chris Walker off and on (mostly on) since 1991 and jumped into RTA along with the rest of the gang by producing the world's first full-body real time character in 1992.  Aaron is our head producer, responsible for some of Modern Cartoons' most successful projects including the wildly popular Sony E3 events, USA Networks I Am SciFi with Lara Croft, Fox Television’s Groundhog series, and Locomotion, the groundbreaking/award-winning interstitial slate for the Hearst/Cisneros Group. Prior to joining Modern, Aaron produced independent television, motion pictures, and theater projects, and was Executive Director of Pipeline, Los Angeles’ seminal experimental theater production company. .

 

Rob Clampett Jr. - Creative Producer

 

Conor “the con-man” Libby - Creative Development

Conor brings us his extensive experience in designing, fabricating, and marketing toys and children's products. He has worked with all of the big toy companies including Hasbro, Galoob, Mattel, Bandai and Playmates on hugely successful toy lines including Xena, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Xmen and Cabbage Patch Kids.  For the company, Conor is responsible for creating new TV shows that will translate into powerful merchandising programs as well as good entertainment. 

 

Chris “boozle” Walker - Chief Cook and Bottle Washer

President and CEO of Modern Cartoons, Chris grew up on the West Coast in Berkeley.  He went to Rhode Island School of Design to become a sculptor and came out the other side as an animator. at Disney’s Cal Arts.  He quickly grew “very tired of drawing ducks,” even though he still cites chief influences as Disney and Saturday morning series like Johnny Quest.

After a brief stint running effects house Bo Gehring & Associates, Chris and friend John Allen founded Mr. Film Studios in 1987 to develop proprietary hardware and software systems for computer graphics character animation.   In 1991 Chris decided to devote the resources of the studio to motion capture-based technologies for character animation. (He’s the proud owner of serial number 001 of Ascension “Flock of Birds” motion sensor system.)

Chris is one of a handful of key pioneers of motion capture and performance animation.  He  debuted the first character-based application of real time animation at Siggraph 91—featuring just two motion sensors— one controlling his “Silver Suzy Surfer” character and one controlling a real-time camera.   At Siggraph 92  his Mr. Film Studios debuted the first fully realized real-time performance animation character—Dr. Scratch, a  hip-hop skeleton with a blistering lyric sung by rapper Ice-T.   Chris has been riding the edge of a self-made creative and technological wave ever since.

 

Production Department

Hall Hutchison - Head of Production - Technical Producer - Producer

Hall has been the head of production and technical director at Modern Cartoons since 1994.  Hall is the glue that bind together the creative, production, and technical departments at the studio.  Since coming to California in 1981 to work on one of the first interactive laserdiscs for MCA,  he has worked in both feature film and television.  Some of his credits include producer and technical supervisor of animated segments for PeeWee’s Playhouse and Liquid Television, technical supervisor in visual effects for such films as Two of a Kind (20th Century Fox), Halloween III (Universal) and Superman IV (Cannon).  He worked extensively with interactive kiosks and programs, for such groups as the State of California, US Information Agency and Great Western Bank.

Hall graduated Cornell University with a degree in Archaeology, specializing in remote sensing applications. Before coming to Modern Cartoons Hall took a year off to head up the field operations and technical R&D for the search for the sunken ferry of King Charles I—lost off the coast of Burnt Island, Scotland, in 1633.

Laura Lefaivre- Producer

Laura graduated with a BFA in Broadcast Communications from William Woods University in 1993.  She worked in TV and feature film production and post-production for several years.  In 1996 she joined Buena Vista Home Entertainment for two years as a technical coordinator. In February 1998 Laura began working at Modern Cartoons as a real time animation technician.

  Don Scott - Producer 

 

Artists

Pietro “The Chisel” Bonomi “The Chisel” - Master Digital Sculptor

A real digital Michaelangelo, Pietro Bonomi is head RTA sculptor at Modern Cartoons.  He is an indispensable talent for the company, responsible for a variety of requirements including sculpting, back ground art, texture mapping, lighting and building in the performance based animation features into characters. 

 

For Modern Cartoons  Bonomi has been involved with almost all of the RTA characters.  He created the “Def Man” sculpture for HBO’s “Def Comedy Jam,” “CGI Steve” for “steve.oedekerk.com” a special to air on NBC, “Beep” for Swedish television, “Top Cat” for Hanna-Barbera and “Basil” for a New York based pay-TV station.  He contributed to the creation of “Hilbur” a character for TV1000 that aired over one hundred episodes.  His work for “Crash Bandicoot” is scheduled to be shown at the E3 show the  Summer 1997.

 

Pietro worked at Mr. Film for seven years before starting work with Modern Cartoons.  Mr. Bonomi started work at Mr. Film as a background artist for “Haunts” a special effects job for the Canadian market but soon  proved to be a valuable sculptor for many of the company’s key projects.  He has provided groundbreaking work using motion capture data for the animation sequences in conjunction with Wavefront’s Dynamation.  Pietro provided the texture maps and streamlined the dataset that was used for “Dr. Scratch”, the world’s first performance animated character.

Pietro has been able to couple his graphics background and his passion for comic books on several projects including the throne room for “Dr. Doom” for a feature based on “The Fantastic Four” from Marvel Comics.  He provided key frame animated sequences for many other commercial jobs and theme park applications.

Osamu “Big O” Takahiro

 

Osamu is a unique blend of artistic talent and technical skill.  Osamu’s main focus at Modern Cartoons is to create 3D characters and keyframe animations as well as realistic particle animations and 2D backgrounds.  He is adept using a variety of programs including Softimage, Softimage Particles, Dynamation, After Effects, Adobe Premiere, Adobe Photoshop, Fractal Painter and Detailer.

Osamu previously worked as a System Administrator for Modern Cartoons. His background in Japan was in Engineering.  He graduated from Kyushu University in Fukuoka Japan.  He majored in Engineering.  After graduation Osamu worked as a System Engineer for a company called Recruit from 1988 to 1990.  Then he moved to the United States and studied ESL at Cal State Long Beach in 1991.  He came to UCLA Extension and studied Computer Animation from 1992 to 1994.

Megumi “Twinkle Toes” Shimizu

Megumi is the newest member of our artist team. She has studied graphics and design at SUNY Buffalo, DH Institute of Media Arts, and UCLA. She is fluent in Japanese and English--as well as Alias/Wavefront, LightWave, and Adobe AfterEffects.

Teod “The Toad” Tomlinson

Teod is another Art School casualty, having done his time at Art Center in Pasadena. Drawing and painting. Teod lives in Silverlake in a pink stucco bungalow with big green bananna plants outside. A little-known fact is that Teod’s trained mouse “Jeep-Jeep” comes to work with him daily, hidden away in his left front pocket.

 

Software Design

Frank Little, Ph.D. - Chief Science Officer

Dr. Little earned his BS in Mathematics (Computer Science) at Southern State Utah College, and his Ph.D. In Mathematics (Computer Aided Geometric Design) at the University of Utah. He has been an instrumental member of Modern Cartoons and Mr. Film since 1991, where his efforts have included enhancing morphing animation techniques for body and lip-synch, and the development of the bodysuit which makes it possible for motion-capture animation in real time. Dr. Little has also developed post production editing and re-animating hardware and software for Modern Cartoons, including real time three-dimensional morphing, moving images, and a 6-D input device with sound and animation scrub and playback.

Before working with Modern Cartoons, Little was Senior Software Engineer at 3-D Systems in Valencia California where his work earned patents in new techniques for high speed stereolithographs, and Managing/Technical consultant for MegaMath Corporation in Manhattan Beach and Math Engines, Incl., based in San Francisco.

Dr. Little, a prolific author for professional journals, has also been involved in the development of computer graphics systems for Rockwell, MacDonnell Douglas, Lockheed, and Goodyear Aerospace.

 

Dominik Weber

Herr Weber grew up in the Canary Islands. He attended the University of Karlsruhe, where he earned a Diploma in Computer Science, and went on to the University of Dortmund to do graduate studies for a Ph.D. in Computer Science—where he continued to pursue and develop a particular interest in encryption.

Besides working for Modern Cartoons, Dominik has worked as Technical Director at Activision, and The Dreamers Guild in Los Angeles. Dominik likes computer games. His hair is sometimes pink, sometimes blue, and sometimes lemon yellow.

Derek “Drk” Woolverton
Derek started off knowing what he wanted from life—he wanted to work with computer graphics and get rich. After years he finally realized that those two goals might be mutually exclusive, and since then has expanded his skills to include image processing, networking, windows programming, workload balancing management, html, fortran, game engines, file utilities, x windows interfaces, and finance.

When he's not jet-lagged, Derek’s in front of computer implementing the latest solution to the world's hardest problems.

Jorge Luis Imperial

Jorge was born in Mexicali, México in 1965. In 1989 he got his B.S. in Computer Engineering from CETYS in México with a thesis on the design of a Concurrent Prolog personal computer based on T400 Transputers. He did additional academic work in Logic Programming, 3D input devices, speech synthesis and AI game design. He was accepted as a graduate student in the Parallel Processing Architectures in Universidad de Cantabria in Santander, Spain—but life, being what it is, spun him into the private sector and he has been working for Rockwell Semiconductor Division and Digital Data de México. His focus has been on imaging systems: optical storage, scanner interface, JPEG compression of color photos, database programming, OCR on Personal Computers and RS/6000 Minicomputers. He is the primary architect of the real time facial animation editing system which is part of the suite of tools at Modern Cartoons, Just prior to joining Modern Cartoons, he has worked with Baja California’s Electoral Registry as head of Technical Support Department.

Larry Luther - Head of Software Design

Larry Luther is director of software design at Modern Cartoons.  He received his BA in physics from the University of California at Irvine in 1971.  Contributions span from graphics device drivers to animation control languages.  Strongly experienced with designing/developing motion choreography and modeling software.

Mr. Luther began his professional work with Hughes Aircraft working with the technical staff for three years.  He then was employed with Digital Productions for four years as Director of Research Technical Directors. Next Mr. Luther worked with Gary Damos at Demographics whose clients included Digital Equipment, Interactive Machines Incorporated and ModaCAD.  Most recently before coming to Modern Cartoons, Mr. Luther worked in the Research and Development department at Disney Imagineering for five years.

Our secret motto is: “Have no fear—Luther’s here!”

 Yves Bodson

Our premier database designer, Yves was born in the Belgian Congo and speaks French, German, Italian, English, Spanish, Dutch and Swahili.  He attended the University Libre de Bruxelles and UCLA. His keen intellect slices like a diamond through the Gordian Knot of programming. With what can only be explained as an innate natural instinct for simplicity and order, Yves dances lightly (like a French Fred Astaire) across a galaxy of megabytes--the King of Database.

 

Yves’ history is as rich as his sweaters. He has worked with the IMF in Washington D.C., Toyota, Interlink Corp., the Museum of Science and Industry in Los Angeles, and the Egyptian government in Cairo. He has published numerous papers, as well as the book “Le Club du Livre,” an exploration of virtual reality.

 

Hardware Design and Fabrication

Babak Beheshti - Chief Engineer - Inventor

Babak got his first soldering gun at the age of seven, and has been using it ever since.

Prior to coming to Modern Cartoons he worked for the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics.  There he built the electronics for physics experiments and interface experiments for computers, and then did a stint at the Department of Commerce research labs for several years making researcher “human” and apparatus “machine” interfaces. He has also worked on remote seismic sensors, gravity measurements devices and elementary particle detection chambers.

Babak joined Mr. Film, now Modern Cartoons, in 1993. Since then he’s been instumental in the design of some of our coolest toys: the motion capture suit, our data gloves, face trackers, ISCAN vector film recorder, joystick systems, camera and animation controllers and other fancy things including the event box and many other animation input devices.

Macky Beheshti - Head of IT

Macky has been designing computer systems and network infrastructures for the entertaiment industry since 1990.  He was the Director of Engineering at Warner Bros. Imaging Technology (WBIT)(1995), Director of Technology at Synctrix (1996), and is in charge of infrastructure design and facility implementation at Modern Cartoons and Mr. Film (1990 to present).  His various inventions and credits include the implementation of a D1 Video Facility  at WBIT, Design and implementation of D1 Still Store for Warner Bros. Telecine Operations, co-invention of the D1 Spigot at Synctrix, as well as development of film scanning and recording technologies.

Yes, Macky is Babak’s brother.

Scott Robitille - Hardware Guru

Scott joined our team in 1996, comparatively recently, but in this short while he has designed and perfected the circuitry for our face and eye tracker. He is a superlative engineer with years of experience inventing 3D ultrasonic input devices and video capture boards. 

According to Dominik Weber: “Scott can float in the air and I once saw him walk over a lake to heal an injured swan. He is love. He can fix things simply by thinking about them.”  Besides, he has years of experience with hardware design, pattern recognition and image processing, game development systems and toy development. He holds a degree in Mathematics from Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, Calif.

 Todd Jaquith - Master Fabricator

Todd has been collaborating with M.C. for years.  One of several Art School casualties, Todd attended the ubiquitous Cal Arts where he studied sculpture and metal-working. Todd has been happily designing, machining and tooling parts and motion control equipment for us for years. In fact, there is not a single piece of hardware in our studio that he hasn’t helped build.

 Suzette Picazzo

Suzette studied costume design in her home of Amsterdam. She has designed costumes for theatrical productions, Las Vegas shows-and even Super Bowl half-times. She is an integral member of the hardware design team, working with the engineers to design and build the fit, form, and aesthetic structure of our suits and gloves.

Support Staff

Joseph “terry” Anderson III

Terry is our resident eccentric genius. He was recently a contestant on “Jeopardy” where he won $10,000 and a trip to Puerto Vallarta, but blew the Final Jeopardy question “What is ‘Twelve Angry Men’?”  He attended Connecticut College, The National Theater Institute and SUNY Purchase. He is also a Licensed Massage Therapist.

Dan “the man” Mctague

There probably isn’t anything that Dan can’t do. He writes, sings, dances, and is a distributor of Green Magma Health Products. He dreams of one day owning a Neem farm on Maui.

Gene “the real” Mccoy

Gene is an incredibly talented journeyman carpenter and all-around good guy. He’s also a Vietnam veteran who served in the Special Forces. He was recently married and is in the process of adopting a new son.