Today’s LA Times has an interesting article about the new wave of animated features made possible by the dropping costs of computer equipment. Projects like Valiant, Delgo, Foodfight! and Hoodwinked – a detective-story take on Little Red Riding Hood – are being developed by small independent studios, often on a shoestring budget. The internet also plays a role, allowing the productions to be spread among thousands of small animation studios all over the planet. One example of this new way of working is IDT Entertainment’s network, that extends to more than 120 countries and includes in-house DPS/Film Roman and Vancouver’s Mainframe Entertainment. That production pipeline is being used for Happily N’Ever After, a twisted action/adventure take on the tales of the Brothers Grimm featuring the voices of Sigourney Weaver, Sarah Michelle Gellar and George Carlin, among others. Here’s hoping that the new affordable tools for producing CG will result in more independent, original features to complement the blockbusters from the big studios.