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Fantastic Beasts Spied on Expanded Studio Tour

Warner Bros. Studios is adding some fantastic beasts to its studio tour. The Burbank film and television studio has revamped the second floor of its museum to add props and costumes from the current film, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” The items join those already on display from the “Harry Potter” film franchise. “Fantastic Beasts” is based on a 2001 book by Potter author J.K. Rowling. It is purported to be a reproduction of a copy owned by Harry Potter as a student at wizard school Hogwarts, and written by Newt Scamander, a magizoologist, or one who studies magical creatures. At the museum, visitors can see costumes worn by Scamander (portrayed by Eddie Redmayne), and other film characters. The exhibit also shows how Rowling’s Wizarding World has been brought to life on screen since the first Potter film in 2001. Danny Kahn, executive director of the studio tour, said it was exciting to let visitors behind the lens to see how filmmakers developed the series. “This expansion will transport guests from Harry Potter’s Hogwarts adventures back to 1926 New York, where Newt Scamander’s misplaced magical case has found its home,” Kahn said in a prepared statement. The expanded exhibit also includes a display of concept art and final designs used on the set. Additionally, there is an interactive experience in which visitors will be sorted into one of the four Hogwarts houses by the magical Sorting Hat in a recreation of the school’s Great Hall that includes costumes of Hogwarts professors. Visual Storyteller Victoria Alonso, executive vice president at Marvel Studios, will receive the Visionary Award from the Visual Effects Society at its awards show in February. She is recognized by the Sherman Oaks trade group as role model and for her dedication to the advancement of storytelling through visual effects.  At Marvel, owned by Walt Disney Co., in Burbank, she oversees post-production and visual effects for the studio. Mike Chambers, chair of the Visual Effects Society board, called Alonso an amazing creative force and powerhouse producer with a unique vision to deliver some of the most popular movie franchises of all time. Her executive producer credits include “Ant Man,” “Doctor Strange,” “Captain America: Civil War,” “Guardians of the Galaxy” and its upcoming sequel, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Creative Merger Promotions agency Flex Creative added new clients this month with the acquisition of SuchAGoodDog, a marketing and promotions production house. Terms of the deal between Flex, in Burbank, and SuchAGoodDog were not disclosed. The transaction brings to Flex new clients including ABC, Freeform (formerly ABC Family) and Reelz Network, and a new vice president of marketing and creative in Steve Silverman, founder of SuchAGoodDog. Peter Martin, founder and chief creative director of Flex, said he was thrilled to have Silverman at the company. “One of our goals for Flex Creative in the coming year is to begin to regularly create and produce online and linear content,” Martin said in a prepared statement. “Steve’s the right guy for the job.” Flex Creative makes TV promos, episodic spots and syndication campaigns in 4K and ultra-high definition formats. SuchAGoodDog was started in 2012 by Silverman. He previously worked at the WB Network, cable channel Bravo and NBC. Machinima Acquired Warner Bros. Entertainment signed an agreement to acquire the remainder of multi-channel gamer network Machinima Inc. that it didn’t already own. Machinima, in Los Angeles, will become part of the digital networks business unit of the Burbank entertainment company. Digital Networks President Craig Hunegs said the acquisition would help develop more direct relationships with consumers. “Machinima is a strong gamer, and fandom content and social brand with enormous reach and high engagement with audiences that play our games and are big fans of DC films and television shows,” Hunegs said in a statement. Warner Bros. has been an investor in Machinima since 2014, leading an $18 million funding round that year, and a $24 million round a year later. Staff Reporter Mark R. Madler can be reached at (818) 316-3126 or mmadler@sfvbj.com.

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
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