The History of GET ANIMATED!
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Back in 1984, I was just beginning work in the animation industry. At that time, there was very little being written about the field of animation. Most of the material was either fan based articles on historical figures and characters, occasional rumors or press release material from the studios. And even the studios were doing a poor job of promoting their productions.

Having already published a magazine for film collectors, and been an aniation "reporter" for a variety of small publications, I decided it was time for U.S. animation to get the kind of info previously only found in some Japanese animation magazines. I created GET ANIMATED!, a regular publication with a focus on news about current animation productions, studios and people. I gathered an international group of writers who assisted with columns and articles.

The first Get Animated! proved popular with fans, professionals, and even studios. It was praised in a number of publications, including Shamus Culhane's "Animation: from Script to Screen". Seeing the need for even more information, I created two annual directories. One was the first comprehensive listing of international animation studios, events and publications. The other was the first comprehensive listing of animation on home video covering hundreds of tapes and discs.

However, as production needs in my career increased, my spare time decreased. Eventually, Get Animated! had to cease publication. I continued assisting other publications, including creating Animation News (aka Animation Magazine). Again, finding a lack of hard news, I tried to make time again with Get Animated! Update, a monthly publication of just news bits. Several items were ground breaking enough to be picked up the "general press". Sadly, again, time kept me from a long publication history.

As more of my time was spent on producing animation for TV and features, I found little for real publishing. Get Animated! remained alive via a few attempts to find new directions, including a publication dedicated to reviewing animated productions and publications and a book of inhouse studio cartoons (another first) by great animator/storyman Floyd Norman. Eventually, my free time was spent writing books (usually with partner and good friend Jim Korkis), occasional articles and studio work (development, scripts, stories, etc.)

I'm proud that Get Animated! showed there was a market for current animation news. My publications were stepping stones for lots of other publishers (some who merely "borrowed" my ideas), editors and writers. As I look around, I am a bit saddened that most animation reporting has gone back to mainly rumors and press material. I still believe that people in our business deserve as strong a reporting source as other skills.

- John Cawley


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