AU alums score animation breakthrough

Tue, 2012-07-31 14:28 -- univcomm
Fairy tales do come true. That's the word from Hoosiers whose computer-animated movie, "Hoodwinked: The True Story of Red Riding Hood," has been picked up by movie moguls Bob and Harvey Weinstein. "Hoodwinked," a "crime story" three years in the making, is slated for release in late 2005 or early 2006 by the Weinsteins' new company. Brothers Todd and Cory Edwards and their sister, Katie Hooten, graduates of Anderson University, may have hit a cinematic home run, according to their father, Dr. James L. Edwards. He is president of the university, which was founded in 1917 by the Church of God (Image: Blue Yonder Films).

It's a thrill for Edwards, who has "watched them hang on and make it year-to-year with almost nothing."

The Edwards brothers co-wrote and co-directed the feature-length CGI-animated film with Tony Leech, a Michigan native they met in Tulsa, former headquarters of their Blue Yonder Films. Hooten, who used to work for Disney, is an associate producer. Todd, 33, also wrote several songs for the film, something that surprised his father.

"We never knew of him as a songwriter. We knew he banged around on the piano, and he learned to play the guitar and played the trombone."

Cory, 36, recently said by telephone from Los Angeles, "I don't know that anybody has ever done it the way we've done it, outside the studio system, with comparable animation to the stuff you're seeing coming out of studios like Disney or Pixar."

The Oscar-winning Weinsteins, who founded Miramax, were tipped off to "Hoodwinked" by Elizabeth Rodriguez, wife of filmmaker Robert Rodriguez, who is a friend of the Edwardses' lawyer.

[Editor’s Note: The above excerpt appeared in today’s edition of the Indianapolis Star. For access to the full story, please click on this link].

---Writer Bonnie Britton is a reporter for the Indianapolis Star