Friday, 17 May 2019

Trifecta

Goin' on tour! Sort of.
As previously mentioned Sunscapades screens 8pm tonight at the Australian International Animation Festival in Wagga Wagga's Forum 6 cinema. Even better news is the Late Night Bizarre programme that the film's a part of will be popping up at two other top-tier Australian fests over the course of the summer.
Next month sees it at the prestigious Sydney Film Festival under the alternate title Animation After Dark. This will be on Thursday June 6th 8:30pm at Dendy Cinemas Newtown.
Then in July it will be at the Melbourne International Animation Festival on the 19th at 9pm. Right now it looks like their site is in a bit of a gestation period but I'm pretty sure the venue for it will be the AMCI.
All three of these have been on my festival wish-list for a good long while so it's a real thrill to be involved. This also signifies a bit of a milestone in my indie filmmaking career that I'll elaborate on in my next post.
Ooh, what a tease I is!

Monday, 6 May 2019

May Days

http://www.anifilm.cz/en
Sunscapades appears to be trundling merrily along with a batch of screening events lined up through the summer. I don't have firm info on all of them yet but there are a couple coming up this month that seem to be set in stone. Firstly it will be screening at the rather magnificent Anifilm International Festival of Animated Films in Třeboň, Czech Republic as part of a special late-night screening (this is becoming a bit of a recurring - and welcome - theme) Midnight Animation: Blood. This will be Friday May 10th 11:30pm at the Světozor Cinema.
http://www.aiaf.info/aiaf/2019/late-night-bizarre
A week later it will be in the similarly-themed Late Night Bizarre programme that takes place during the Australian International Animation Festival, alongside some new work from the likes of Will Anderson, Peter Millard and Jodie Haslam as well as some familiar recent shorts I'm quite fond of such as Lorenz Wunderle's Coyote and recent Skwigly interviewee David Barlow-Krelina's Caterpillarplasty. It looks like a fun one but if you can't make it to Wagga Wagga I get the impression the screening itself will be playing at a couple other fests down under in the near future.
https://fest-der-filme.de/
At the end of the month the 15th Detmold Short Film Festival will kick off, assuredly with Sunscapades somewhere among the line-up although no specifics just yet (update to follow). This marks my third inclusion at Detmold following the selection of The Naughty List in 2011 as well as being one of the small handful of fests that gave Ground Running a punt the following year, so I've got a bit of a soft spot for 'em.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Fierce Creatures

http://feeds.soundcloud.com/stream/606183735-skwigly-skwigly-podcast-90.mp3
In the ninetieth episode of the Skwigly Animation Podcast it's a delight to welcome back previous podcast guest Chris Butler, speaking with Laura-Beth about Missing Link, his latest stop-motion feature with LAIKA.
Chris’s previous work includes his directorial debut ParaNorman (for which he also wrote the original screenplay) as well as his roles as Head of Story/co-writer on Kubo and the Two Strings and story supervisor on Coraline. His prior experience includes design and storyboard roles on a number of high profile projects including Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride.
This episode also features a recent chat I had with Justin K. Thompson, production designer on Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. An Emmy Award–winning artist with over twenty years of experience in television including Star Wars: Clone Wars and feature films such as the Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs series, Justin has worked for a variety of entertainment industry powerhouses including Disney, DreamWorks, Lucasfilm, Paramount, Sony, Cartoon Network, the Jim Henson Company and Warner Bros. Click here for more info and to find out how to be in with a chance to win a copy of the film on Bluray.
Also in this episode Steve and I natter about early trailers for Toy Story 4 and Farmageddon: A Shaun the Sheep Movie as well as recent animated series aimed at adults including Love Death + Robots and The Shivering Truth.
As always y'all can direct download, subscribe or stream below:

Friday, 29 March 2019

My Crowd

https://www.calgaryundergroundfilm.org/
The Canadian Sunscapades invasion (well, light intrusion) continues with another couple of screenings scheduled to take place in the blessed land of poutine and syrup later this month. Following on from the film's recent outings in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal it will be headed to the Calgary Underground Film Festival. In this instance it won't be part of a dedicated animation or shorts programme but will be the opening film before the independent feature Assassinaut, which looks like great fun. Calgarians can catch the films at 9:30pm April 25th and 4:15pm April 27th at the Globe Cinema - more info here.
https://www.bifff.net/program/courts-mais-trash-3/
Also the aforementioned Courts Mais Trash/BIFFF screening scheduled for 10pm on the 20th I now know will take place at the BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts (fancy!) in Brussels. The event is listed as Courts Mais Trash rather than Carte Blanche as originally thought, at any rate you can find out more info on it and grab up your tickets here.

Monday, 18 March 2019

For the Francophones

https://www.courtsdunsoir.com/?lang=en
Sunscapades is still nosing its way into the odd festival here and there, with its next screening taking place in Montreal, probably my favourite city. It will be part of Festival Courts d'un Soir which runs from April 3rd-6th, in the programme Les Très Courts on the 5th, 5pm at Cinéma Beaubien.
https://www.bifff.net/
Later in the month, as an extension of its involvement in the Brussels Independent Short Film Festival: Courts Mais Trash back in January the film will also be screened during the Brussels International Fantasy, Fantastic, Thriller and Science Fiction Film Festival (BIFFF). Festivalgoers can catch it in the special programme Carte Blanche on April 20th at 10pm (not sure of the venue so I'd suggest checking the festival website closer to the time).
Not a whole heap else to report for now although it's worth flagging that Secrets of British Animation, the documentary I peripherally contributed to which originally aired in December, was repeated the other day and so will be on the BBC iPlayer for another few weeks if you missed it the first time around.

Friday, 1 March 2019

Marching On

Just one festival lined up for Sunscapades this month. Them lovely Grecians at the Athens Animfest have included it in their 2019 official selection, along with 350 other films. Guess they ain't too picky but hey, glad to be on board. I go back quite a ways with this festival; they were one of the few events to feature my second film Ground Running a decade ago and also showed The Naughty List in 2011.
So I'm grateful for another inclusion and festivalgoers can catch the film in Shorts 6 on Saturday March 16th 8pm at the Oikia Theotokopoulou - for free, no less!
In our most recent Skwigly Animation Podcast we meet Louise Bagnall and Nuria González Blanco, director and producer respectively of the Oscar-nominated Cartoon Saloon short film Late Afternoon. Also discussed in this episode – the legacy of Cartoon Saloon as a whole, the end of the NFTS’s BAFTA streak and the one-two punch of new Disney trailers for the Aladdin remake and Frozen 2. Download for keepsies or stream it thiswise:

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Northeastern Exposure

https://www.taafi.com/shorts-1-comedy-tonight/
By happy coincidence Sunscapades will have another Canadian screening this month mere days before its BC debut at the Just For Laughs festival in Vancouver. The film will be returning to Toronto for TAAFI - the Toronto Animation Arts Festival International - as part of the event's opening night screening Shorts 1: Comedy TONIGHT! This will be Friday February 15th, 7:15pm at the Hot Docs Cinema.
https://www.thenewcurrent.co.uk/sunscapades
Something I neglected to mention earlier but worth posting is that the lovely folks over at The New Current recently interviewed me about (mainly) Sunscapades during its participation in the British Shorts festival in Berlin last month. This is the same outlet that interviewed me for the 2018 edition of the festival when Klementhro was involved, although it appears that they've removed that year's coverage from their site (so you can read the older interview here instead).

Friday, 1 February 2019

Northwestern Exposure

After a busy couple of months I think things will be slowing down for Sunscapades on the festivals front for the next little bit. Personal priorities were reshuffled and since August I haven't been as proactive when it comes to submissions, but I plan to do one more burst this year before I call it a day.
http://www.jflnorthwest.com/vancouver-just-for-laughs-film-festival/
This month there's only one festival lined up but it's a pretty exciting one, the Vancouver Just For Laughs Film Festival that runs from the 14th-23rd. I have a lot of fond memories of Just For Laughs from over the years (mainly meeting Chip) so this is a pretty special one to get to be involved with. It also puts the film in the running to potentially screen at the Montreal edition in the summer which would be a nice bonus, so fingers crossed there.
Sunscapades will play on Sunday February 17th in their World Wide Shorts screening at the Vancity Theatre. The overall line-up for the festival looks great, with Dave Attell, Michelle Wolf, Matteo Lane, Seth Rogan, Fred Armisen and many more on the bill so rest assured I'll be stewing in major FOMO while it's going on.

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Onward

And we made it to 2019. Go us.
While 2018 was a very positive year for work and creative endeavours, in the real world we had a barrage of sadnesses to deal with that all came to a head in December. Such is life and its strange, at times arbitrarily cruel ways. Needless to say I am in awe of my wife, whose incomparable beauty in body and soul is matched by immeasurable selflessness under the hardest of circumstances. Would that we should all be so lucky to have such people in our lives and be better in ourselves as a consequence; maybe the world would be less streaked with the impotent rage and entitlement and fear that seems to be driving us forward these days.
Ultimately right now I'm in a bit of a bubble where most of the stuff I write about on here (chiefly the podcastey/cartooney stuff), seems especially frivolous and my energy to accompany news updates with not-especially-pithy asides is pretty much nil. But I do continue to have enormous gratitude and respect for the arts festivals and magazine/podcast guests that give me their time, not to mention my employers and students, and so for the next little while I'll try and keep this site updated when I can, but if it seems a little more dry and methodical than usual, well, this is why. That was a long, clunky sentence.
Firstly a little correction, last month I mentioned that the In-Short Film Festival based in Lagos (not to be confused with the near-identically-named InShort Film Festival) had selected Sunscapades to screen although the info they supplied was a little vague. Suspicions proved valid as it turns out they had been telling everyone who was preselected (possibly everyone who submitted) that their work had gone through so that they would spread awareness of the festival and boost its social media presence. Be it an innocent mistake or deliberate chicanery it's pretty poor form either way so I'd flag this event as one to avoid in future. Even this many years in I still occasionally learn lessons about being more discerning in which festivals to submit to and I guess this was one of those occasions.
https://shortfilms.org.uk/lsff2019/events/2019-01-13-new-shorts-animation-variety-showcase
Fortunately there are some more reputable events that Sunscapades will be involved with this month. Firstly I'm really pleased to again be part of the London Short Film Festival following Klementhro's inclusion back in 2017. This time around I'll be part of the New Shorts: Animation Variety Showcase on Sunday January 13th, 4pm at the Regent Street Cinema.
https://britishshorts.de/
Then for the film's German debut another festival to have previously included Klementhro is the British Shorts Film Festival based in Berlin. They'll be screening Sunscapades in Festival Screening #3 at the Sputnik Kino on Friday January 18th at 11pm.
http://courtsmaistrash.net/test-les-inclassables-2/?lang=en
The following night the film sees its Belgian premiere at the Brussels Independent Short Film Festival: Courts Mais Trash in their Unclassifiables 2 section. This one will be at 7:30pm at Les Riches-Claires.
And that's it for now. Be excellent to each other, my friends.

Monday, 24 December 2018

Everybody Scream

http://www.skwigly.co.uk/podcast-caroline-thompson/
In our last Skwigly Animation Podcast of 2018 we look back at the seminal stop-motion feature The Nightmare Before Christmas which this year celebrated its 25th anniversary – and I'm delighted to welcome the film’s screenwriter Caroline Thompson to discuss her career and contributions to the film. It was especially exciting as Caroline also wrote Edward Scissorhands and the 1991 Addams Family movie, both of which were also favourites of mine growing up although Nightmare is definitely at the top of that particular leaderboard. Her other projects include Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey, Black Beauty, Corpse Bride and the recently-released Welcome to Marwen (out in the UK this January). Download here or listen below:
I want to give a special shout-out to my pal Isabel Peppard who helped put this in motion - I hadn't really planned out putting out a podcast this month for various reasons but thanks to her help this all managed to come together very quickly and sort of out of nowhere. I interviewed Isabel about her work for the site as well as our 2013 Annecy documentary and you can follow her amazing work on Instagram.
Don't have much else to offer on a Xmassey theme save for this looping animation I did the other day. I think it's pretty self-explanatory:
And to all a good night!