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WB overusing DongWoo and Lotto Animation?

Discussion in 'Warner Bros.' started by Dave Koch, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. Dave Koch

    Dave Koch Cartoon Admin

    Oct 27, 2013
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    I wonder if I was the only one that noticed this, but it seems since around 2001-2002, Warner Bros. Animation has been usually outsourcing their work to Dong Woo Animation Co. Ltd (now DongWoo A&E) and Lotto Animation in Korea. This stumps me because while they do use other Korean studios (such as Saerom Animation, Starburst Animation and Yearim Productions), their most-frequent go-to studio for overseas animation is DongWoo Animation. In fact, if you look at almost 80% of their shows made since 2002, you will noticed that at least one episode has been animated by DongWoo Animation. Even many of their direct-to-video productions had DongWoo Animaton involved! In fact, take "ScoobyD-oo: Mystery Incorporated." Guess who animated most of the episodes? DongWoo Animation Co Ltd.

    Their other go-to overseas studio of choice is Lotto Animation, having animated many of their productions. Lotto usually specializes in animating "realistic" and action-themed cartoons. I almost have a suspicion Lotto is tied into Warner Bros. in some way, as I have almost never seen Lotto work with any other company (they might have worked with Adelaide Productions at one time, but I could be wrong.)

    Now, I am not criticizing DongWoo's work, but it does seem WB has very little variety in overseas animation studios these days. Plus, other studios have been picking up on using DongWoo as well, like 4Kids, Adelaide Productions and Cartoon Network Studios, but Lotto still mostly only works with Termite Terrace.

    As for us Looney Tunes, DongWoo had only worked on "Baby Looney Tunes" and "Loonatics Unleashed" :barf: . But Lotto Animation's output we work with actually looks surprisingly good! But the only time of any of us worked in something with Lotto Animation's involvement was that "What's New, Scooby-Doo?" episode "New Mexico, Old Monster"...
    Does anyone else wish "The Looney Tunes Show" looked like this?
    Ironically, DongWoo and Lotto did NOT do any work on "The Looney Tunes Show" for some reason... Warner wanted to stick with Rough Draft Korea (only other time prior to this did WB use Rough Draft was those awful 2003 theatrical-intended shorts Sander Schwartz produced) and Yearim Productions (and Toon City in the first season), along with Crew972 doing those weird CGI shorts I had to star in [​IMG]. I think Lotto would have done a good job animating the characters on the Looney Tunes Show...

    Did anyone else notice this too?
  2. oneuglybunny

    oneuglybunny Moderator Staff Member Forum Member

    Nov 3, 2013
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    Well, like anyone, Warner Brothers is going to play favorites, just as you and I have favorite restaurants, or preferred clothing stores. It happens that Dong Woo Studios produces animation that's On-Budget / On-Time / On-Model, in that order. Dong Woo has earned their favored status with Warner Brothers, and their reward is repeat business with WB.

    In the case of Lotto Animation, I'd speculate that they were under contract to Hanna-Barbera Studios at one point, since that was H-B's preferred method of outsourcing. Once Hanna-Barbera's operations were absorbed by Cartoon Network, Lotto Animation became an adopted "house" studio of Warner Brothers. They remain so for the same reasons as Dong Woo: On-Budget / On-Time / On-Model.

    As to Baby Looney Tunes, please remember that the show was meant for toddlers, and was modeled upon their rival's Disney Babies and Muppet Babies. The Walt Disney Company was already known for child-safe, mother-friendly output; these series were meant to solidify Disney's hold on the American psyche. Right from infancy, Americans are "programmed" to recognize the Disney brand as Clean / Wholesome / Desirable. Warner Brothers did well to field a counterpart series.

    As for Loonatics Unleashed, it was admittedly a mistake, like Coke II. At the time, the Walt Disney Company had purchased ABC Television outright, and soon bulldozed The Bugs Bunny Show off the airwaves. Bugs Bunny and company, bereft of a public stage, began fading badly from the public consciousness. The Loonatics were a desperate attempt to put the Looney Tunes back on the public radar. As it happened, the superhero genre was working very well for Warner Brothers at the time, so the genre blending of Looney Tunes + superhero squad, in theory, could have worked.

    Now, the recent The Looney Tunes Show is another attempt to put Warner Brothers premiere animated characters back on the map, so to speak. Really, when Bugs Bunny and company fail to appear in the top fifteen of Forbes magazine's fictional character cash cows, alarms were going off at WB. All previous efforts to put Bugs Bunny back on stage had generated sizable fan backlash. I believe that Spike Brandt and Tony Cervone chose Jess Borutski's designs and non-canon milieu as a mechanism of Plausible Deniability. If the show clicks with audiences, it can be embraced by the WB studio; otherwise; it can be swept under the rug much like Loonatics.

    So ... Warner Brothers, by not taking their Looney Tunes to Dong Woo or Lotto, could be interpreted as a sign of No Confidence in the Looney Tunes brand. An unpleasable fan base will do that.
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