September 13th, 2005

dealin' dirty

More info on the Digiview See and Learn series.

I was wondering more about the See and Learn titles being re-released by Digiview at Wal-Mart as seen below so I did some searching and the only solid site I found was the company that did the computer graphics, Avekta Productions Inc. I sent an e-mail and got a quick response the next day!
Thanks for your inquiry. We created those videos originally on 3/4" masters using the now, very obsolete computer animation computer, Via Video (which cost $40,000 and was capable of showing up to 16 colors simultaneously on the screen!). This was built on a Cromemco System 1 running the pre-DOS, CPM operating system.

The animator was Drew Fishman. The music was created by the guy who wrote the theme song for Entertainment Tonight. The owner was a fellow named Arthur Shimkin, who owned the original Golden Books franchise.

The series was made in 1985 and was originally distributed in Toys R Us. I understand over 100,000 of the VHS versions were sold in each title. Quite a successful series. I am very happy this series is still in distribution. We would like to do more of these, using modern animation techniques and offering foreign language versions, such as Spanish.

Best wishes.

George Avgerakis
VP Creative Director
Avekta Productions Inc.

The company is still very much in business and Mr. Avgerakis recently published his second book "Digital Animation Bible". his first book "Desktop Video Studio Bible" was published in 2003.

Odd Brentwood waffle case found at Family Dollar

Look at this wacky thing:

Yup, a thin plastic DVD case with a bunch of holes in it. Saves materials and lightens the case I assume. I got one of the Brentwood dollar DVDs at Dollar Tree(not really anything that hasn't been released on the 10-packs) and was surprised to see this when I opened it up.

By the way, the Brentwood print of Mooch is much better than the version put out by Family Value Collection.