Thursday, August 26, 2010

Another Festival

Happy to report I just got word that my zombie film "Rise of The Living Corpse" has just been accepted to another festival. This one is the Maelstrom International Fantastic Festival, in Seattle.

I'm now 5 for 6 on festivals I've heard back from... it's the best average I've ever had on a short film, to be honest. Funny how you learn as you go (and keep learning). From this high percentage of acceptances at horror festivals (as opposed to animation festivals) it makes me think of the age-old saying: "Give 'em what they want."

It seems that what "they" want is my horror films (not that this short is truly a horror film in any graphic sense, it's actually totally G-rated). And if "they" are wanting that, perhaps that is what I should keep giving them.

It's an interesting approach for an indie animator to consider- create genre or niche films that appeal to a specific audience, but do it in animation.

Anything to be different, I guess.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My New Animated Films

This past spring, I finished two stop motion shorts.

The first is called True Family Story, and I've blogged about it quite a bit since I started it nearly two years ago. I'm proud of it, especially the pacing and tone, both of which I feel are light and energetic.

I've only had the energy to send to exactly ONE festival, and that's Ottawa. They turned it down.

I will send it to more fests just as soon as I can gather the energy. It's my own fault- all this energy spent to create the film... then no energy left to send it out there. But it's a solid little film (despite what the Ottawa fest thinks), and I think it will have a pretty good shelf life, so I'll get it out there asap.

Here's a couple of pics of the DVD jacket. The jacket was largely designed by the every-talented Carla Veldman, who was a remarkable assistant through the entire production.

The second little film is called Rise of The Living Corpse. Who doesn't like zombies? Who doesn't like zombie stop motion films?

It's just 30 seconds long, and for THIS film I've actually sent it out to quite a few festivals. It's interesting- because it's a genre film (horror, obviously) that sort of "doubles" the number of fests I can reasonably send it to: horror fests, and animation fests.

And- since most horror fests get live action stuff, and "serious" stuff at that, a 30 second animated comedy stands out to programmers. As a result, I'm happy to say that of the 5 festivals I've heard back from so far, it's been accepted at 4 (with Toronto's After Dark Festival being the silly monkeys that turned it down).

The wise festivals so far include: Fantastic Fest in Austin, Oklahoma Horror Film Festival, Fright Night Festival in Kentucky, and the Chicago Horror Film Festival.

Oh, Ottawa also turned THIS film down as well.

Here's a few pics of the DVD (again, with design tackled by Carla Veldman).

I'm being pretty stingy on posting clips from either film. I kind of like the idea of being exclusive for a little while, with the films only going to fests. I'll post clips (and perhaps eventually the whole films) in the future.

I'll also probably look for some formal distribution, not to make money through, but in my experience it just adds to one's professional reputation to have a 3rd party handle the film.

Or- I'll keep them to myself for distribution and promote it myself exclusively so I can use the films to push my own "brand".

Time will tell...

Back In Action

It's been ages since I've posted. A lot has been going on in the "real world" that has found me with no time or energy for the virtual world.

The main thing has been moving my family to a new town. Essentially, the past six months of our lives have been taken up by "moving" in some way- looking for a new home, buying a new home, prepping our old home to sell, then selling that old home, then moving into our new home.

The past two months have been especially intense. Once we got possession of the new house, we had some pretty major renovations to tackle, while also packing to move out of the old house. Then once into the new house, it's been madness just trying get some boxes unpacked and live a semi-normal life.

The good news is that the move has truly been "life-changing" in a very real (and very positive) way. We love our new home, our new hood, our new town, and it's SO good for our son. He now has heaps of grass to run on, parks and fields to play in, a stellar library to get smart in, and his very own PLAY ROOM. That is, a room dedicated to (you guessed it) playing. It's a room he'll be able to grow with, a room to be himself, to have fun, to just be a kid.

And personally, I'm really looking forward to this winter, when I plan to do some fun mural monsters for him.

My son isn't the only one with play space. I also get my "own room". And for lack of a better name I'll call it my studio.

The little room is humble, it's a mess for now, but it's big enough to "make stuff" in, and that's enough.