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Bazillion Pictures Brings Vision and Life to Groundhog Day

(February 02, 2017)
DMN Newswire--2017-2-2--

Bazillion Pictures Brings Vision and Life to Groundhog Day 

KANSAS CITY, MO - Feb. 2, 2017 - The team at Bazillion Pictures has always thought Groundhog Day receives half the recognition it deserves, especially compared to other holidays - National Cat Day, Halloween . . . you get the picture. Several years ago, the animation studio turned pro-gopher, and through its creative vision decided it was time for people to get a chance to see Phil in a way that no one has really uncovered. That original vision has turned into a series of animated shorts, each one telling a unique story and revealing Phil's character and the trials and tribulations that only a groundhog that has the pressure of delivering the country's winter weather forecast can behold. Bazillion has been building up the groundhog show, and this year we get one step closer.

'We started celebrating Groundhog Day because the holiday stands out from the rest and it allows our team to grow and expand character development through animation and visual FX abilities,' says Jeff Beith, president of Bazillion Pictures. 'We received such a positive response in 2013, when our first spot was released, that we had to make it a tradition!'
For the 2017 story, Phil has finally made it to the hole to make to his prediction. He's ready to be hoisted up to the crowd to give his oh so accurate forecast

Team Takes Animation to New Levels
Bazillion created the groundhog spots as a way the studio could experiment and for the artists to use their animation and FX skills in different ways. 

This year, Phil has come a long way with movement, mannerisms and expressions. Bazillion's lead animator, who is a hair fanatic (nobody knows why or how he became this way), continued to experiment with different aspects of Phil's hair: growing it, grooming it, cutting it, putting it on woolly caterpillars. In fact, Phil has received a brand new hair color. In addition to the nuances of Phil's hair, the modelers and texture artists had fun creating the outdoor environments while the animators received a chance to spread their wings and create more slapstick physical gags. 

While the modelers and texture artists created the environment, the character animators did their work and the FX artist developed the remaining elements such as the "Great Pine Cone Avalanche.' To pull it all together, the project was rendered through computers ' composited together and sent off for sound design. 

'The 2017 work has really excelled through the creativity and mastery of Bazillion's growing team,' Beith added. 'The voice work, storyboarding and rough 'block-in' animation came together seamlessly.'

The first Groundhog Day tribute, 'The Shadow Knows' was a stand-alone 2D motion graphics piece created by Jeff Beith, Bazillion's president and creative director, with the help of his wife, Laura Huliska-Beith, an accomplished children's book illustrator. 

The groundhog has continued to advance with detail and characterization through the studio's master team of 3D animators and FX artists. In 2014, the team created a grumpy, less than humble 3D animated groundhog in the 'Forecasting: Fact or Fiction' show. 'Showtime' was released in 2015, where the emergence of a 3D groundhog assured viewers that he always predicts the weather accurately. 

To learn more about the process and master team behind the groundhog, contact Laura Hudson at or visit our new bleeding-edge website at

Bazillion is an award-winning creative studio that brings great ideas to life. Our passionate team of visionary creators takes each job from concept to living, breathing innovation. A hybrid company dedicated to the advertising and marketing arena, Bazillion crafts high-quality digital media content for forward-thinking clients all over the world.

Created and Directed by Bazillion Pictures
Script & Voice by Michael Ashcraft
Audio by Substream Music

For More Information, contact: 
Laura Hudson, (816)214-6558

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Related Keywords:Visual FX, 3D animators, animation


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