Speaking of cartoons and websites and what not, we are remiss in not mentioning earlier the launch of CartoonBrewFilms.com, which is run by the fine fellows behind must-read animation clog Cartoon Brew Jerry Beck and Amid Amidi. The site will offer downloads of quality animation from everyone from Jib Jab to Bill Plympton, for modest fees up to $2. Yes, it’s a FOR PROFIT venture. The Beat thinks this “paying for your entertainment” trend is going to get big in the coming months. We’ll let the PR explain more of the plan:

The widely read and respected animation industry blog, CartoonBrew.com, is launching a new video-on-demand website, CartoonBrewFilms.com, offering exclusive animated shorts for download. The service is dedicated to making available world-class animated shorts, including cutting-edge CGI productions, long-lost archival treasures and award-winning student films.

Films are designed for viewing on portable media players like iPods and PSPs, as well as personal computers. Cartoon Brew Films will debut new offerings every week, fifty-two weeks a year. Film selections are curated by company founders Jerry Beck and Amid Amidi, both of whom are noted animation historians and authors with considerable experience in the animation industry.

“We want to turn people on to the best that the animation world has to offer,” says Jerry Beck. “Hundreds of excellent animated shorts are produced every year, and the vast majority of them never enjoy distribution on the Internet. Cartoon Brew Films is the solution that filmmakers have been waiting for: a smart place to exhibit work online backed up with a real revenue model that earns filmmakers money.”

Cartoon BrewFilms will represent both established filmmakers and fresh, emerging talent. Artists who have already committed works to the site include JibJab’s Evan and Gregg Spiridellis (This Land, Big Box Mart), indie animation legend Bill Plympton (Guard Dog, Your Face), TV series creator Jorge Gutierrez (El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera), production designer Teddy Newton (The Incredibles), animator Bert Klein (Fantasia/2000, The Lord of the Rings) and animator Mark Kausler (The Lion King, Who Framed Roger Rabbit).

“We’re raising the bar for how animated shorts are presented on the Internet,” says Amid Amidi. “Cartoon Brew films is more than just an online storefront; it’s a passionate community built around animated shorts, and a way to establish new relationships between audiences and filmmakers.” Filmmakers will be actively involved in their film’s presence on the website, and audiences can pose questions directly to the filmmakers. Each film will be accompanied by extensive film notes, mini-essays written by esteemed artists and historians, behind-the-scenes artwork and ‘making of’ video podcasts.

About Cartoon BrewFilms founders:

* Jerry Beck is an animation historian and industry consultant. A former executive with Nickelodeon and Disney, he cofounded Streamline Pictures, the first company dedicated exclusively to importing and distributing anime in North America. Author of 12 books about animation, he also serves as a consulting producer to Warner Home Video.
* Amid Amidi is the publisher and editor of Animation Blast magazine and former associate editor of Animation World Magazine. His most recent book is Cartoon Modern: Style and Design in Fifties Animation (Chronicle Books). He has worked in the TV animation industry and is a frequent speaker at animation festivals.