Friday, 30 December 2016

End on a Song

http://www.skwigly.co.uk/animation-composed/
The podcasts keep coming over in Skwiglyland, and I'm very pleased to bring you the end-of-year special Animation Composed, a celebration of the harmonious relationship between music and animation. This one's been brewing for a while as, being a musician myself, I've often found myself enamoured of the consideration that goes into animation music - quite frequently it's something that can make or break a film entirely. With the aid of Skwigly contributor and freelance composer Wez this episode's been put together as a sort of podcast 'pilot' that may very well have series potential depending on how well it goes down. The nice thing about it is that, on top of the regular interview segments the podcast series are known for, there's the inclusion of music itself which makes it a pretty different beast. So settle in for over two hours of standout animation music selections and exclusive interviews with special guests.
In this podcast we speak with Norwegian multi-instrumental composer/performer John Erik Kaada (AKA Kaada) whose discography includes the solo releases Thank You For Giving Me Your Valuable Time, Music For Moviebikers and Junkyard Nostalgias as well as the Kaada/Patton albums Romances and probably my favourite album of this year, Bacteria Cult. Kaada’s work as a composer for independent film scores recently extended into the world of animated shorts with The Absence of Eddy Table, directed by Rune Spaans.
We also meet Scot Stafford and Alexis Harte of Pollen Music Group, the songwriting organisation responsible for the music of the ongoing 360 VR filmmaking series Google Spotlight Stories, which includes the immersive film projects Duet, Windy Day, Buggy Night and Pearl.
Listen to the special below or over on Soundcloud (NB – this episode is streaming only):
Full playlist:
Phil Brookes – Theme from But Milk is Important
Shane HollyCoda (Excerpt 1)
KaadaThe Absence of Eddy Table (trailer snippet)
Thee WreckersNo Place Like Home
Happy Camper – Winnie & Otto (Otto)
Tim and Puma MimiDupi Dough (Ivan’s Need)
Pollen Music Group – No Wrong Way Home (Pearl)
Pollen Music Group – Les Brises (Windy Day)
Happy Camper – The Accident (Otto)
François-Xavier PaquinCrazy Dance (Wackatdooo)
Shane HollyCoda (Excerpt 2)
Pollen Music GroupBuggy Night (Excerpt)
Pollen Music Group – Breathless (Duet)
Phil Brookes – Theme from Three’s A Crowd
Phil Brookes – The Outsider (But Milk is Important)
SkillbardLovestreams
Thee Wreckers – Splintertime

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Seasonal Cheer (Part 4/4)

You'll be relieved to hear that this post represents the last of what's been a doubtless unnerving bout of goodwill toward men. Well, self-promotion masquerading as goodwill toward men. At least I'm not still trying to get people to buy Throat or watch The Naughty List*.
http://www.skwigly.co.uk/12-animations-christmas/
Today to help balance things out I've instead gathered together some lovely work by some of my favourite creatives and studios, including Rumpus, Blue Zoo, Sun and Moon, Trunk and Mummu, as well as some newcomers. Head on over to Skwigly for the full rundown.

*But seriously folks, buy Throat and watch The Naughty List.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Seasonal Cheer (Part 3/4)

http://www.skwigly.co.uk/podcast-christmas-2016/
For our Christmas 2016 edition of the Skwigly Animation Podcast Steve, Laura-Beth and myself discuss death, grief, erectile dysfunction and eggnog bathing among other such seasonally appropriate topics. On the guests front we’re pleased to welcome talents from three animation highlights of this holiday season:
Firstly we hear from Jamie Badminton, co-director of Snowy Day, whose previous work includes helming Karrot Entertainment‘s various properties including the hugely successful Sarah & Duck. For Snowy Day Karrot have taken on the daunting task of adapting Ezra Jack Keats’s classic of American children’s fiction to animation for an Amazon Prime special.
Also joining the podcast are Joanna Harrison and Robin Shaw of Lupus Films, who have followed up this year’s acclaimed feature film version of Raymond Briggs’s Ethel & Ernest with another classic book adaptation, Michael Rosen’s We’re Going on a Bear Hunt (Channel 4, December 24th 7:30pm and December 25th, 5:25pm).
Last but not least, producer and Magic Light Pictures co-founder Michael Rose (Room on the Broom, Stick Man), discusses the two half-hour Roald Dahl animated specials Revolting Rhymes that he'll be bringing to UK screens (BBC1, December 26th 6:30pm and December 27th 6:30pm).
Lots of goodies indeed. We are, after all, a giving bunch. Give 'er a stream below, why doncha?

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Seasonal Cheer (Part 2/4)

With Klementhro nearing the end of its festival run I wanted to do something for the holidays and, as anyone who's seen the film will doubtless attest, this character was the most obvious choice out of all my films for its range and nuance.
Love and thanks to everyone who's been supportive through the peaks and valleys of this year. And indeed special gratitude to those who saw something in my weird little non-film - OFF - Odense International Film Festival, ANONIMUL IFF, LAIKA, Festival International du Film d'Animation de Paris, Animasyros International Animation Festival + Agora, Área de Contenção, interfilm Berlin, Flensburger Kurzfilmtage, Kyiv International Short Film Festival, Nuit du Court Métrage, AniPromítačka/AniScreen, Skepto FilmFest, Kraken Con, Stuttgart Festival of Animated Film (ITFS), Porto7 - Festival Internacional de Curtas-metragens do Porto, Ploiesti International Film Festival (PIFF), Shorts Attack, Animaze - Montreal International Animation Film Festival, TAFF - Turku Animated Film Festival, BUSHO, Linoleum International Contemporary Animation and Media Art Festival, Fantoche, Filmfest Eberswalde - Provinziale, filmzeitkaufbeuren, Kurzfilmnacht-Tour, SoDak Motion, Kuandu International Animation Festival, Anima Mundi, Anilogue, MUMIA (Mostra Udigrudi Mundial de Animação), London Short Film Festival.
It's been a blast to reconnect with the community again in this way after several years off and it's bolstered me to crack on with my next film Sunscapades which, all being well, will see the light sometime in 2017. Much love y'all!

Monday, 19 December 2016

Seasonal Cheer (Part 1/4)

https://silverfish-pb.bandcamp.com/album/limp-and-numb-an-ep
My plan to gradually reissue my discography through Bandcamp is very gradually coming together in the smallest of small increments. By the end of this year I'd hoped to have an old 2008 album fully remastered and ready to go up, but as this site attests things have been busy as always and so there's still a bit of work to go. The LP in question - titled The Bug Chaser/The Gift Giver and originally put out as two vinyl EPs under the moniker Silverfish - is something of an oddity and pointedly darker/weirder than the stuff I've done as Struwwelpeter.
As a taster I've instead put together a little sampler EP featuring three remastered tracks from the upcoming re-release as well as two exclusive tracks, one a live recording from 2011 with the opening track Bleed My Weakness previously unreleased (it'd been lying on my HD unfinished for a while under the bizarre title 'cookingsong.rns' - I guess I was cooking when I first started writing it in my head). Here's a little announcement video I made for the new track:
The EP, titled Limp and Numb, is available to buy super-cheap on Bandcamp if you fancy treating yourself or the indie music fan in your life this holiday season. As with other releases you can stream it completely free. In fact I'll embed it below so you don't even need to leave this page. How's that for holiday spirit?

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

The Ron & John Show

http://www.skwigly.co.uk/podcast-moana/
For our sixty-third episode of the Skwigly Animation Podcast we hear from directorial duo Ron Clements and John Musker – whose prior credits include the much-loved Disney features The Great Mouse Detective (1986), The Little Mermaid (1989), Aladdin (1992) and Hercules (1997), as well as the more recent 2D animation revival film The Princess and the Frog (2009) – about their latest film Moana, out now in cinemas.
Also discussed in this episode: Animation UK’s recent announcement at 10 Downing Street, highlights from the London International Animation Festival, the continued success of Claude Barras’s My Life as a Courgette/Zucchini, incurring the wrath of Hayao Miyazaki and the bad influence of a certain Quoanna Jinn. Give it a stream down below, you streaming little streamy streamersons:

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

The boy who lived under the stairs

Hi m'lovelies. I just came back from a lovely time at the London International Animation Festival. Time not spent at the festival during the trip was less lovely, however. In truth Shelley Duvall had a nicer and more relaxed winter at the Overlook Hotel.
Here's a short travelogue I prepared over on my Facebook page for the benefit of those who wish to live the high life vicariously through me. Enjoy!

Friday, 2 December 2016

Wait, what year is it again?

http://weihnachtsfilmfestival.de
While this month is a quiet one for Klementhro, I'm very happy to say that my preceding 2010 film The Naughty List will be getting a festival screening this holiday season (appropriately enough). The film is pretty long-in-the-tooth, so big screen outings are a rare affair - the last one was in 2013 - but it's proved a fit for Berlin's Weihnachts Filmfestival, a Christmas festival "for those who want to escape the Christmas rush or do not have their loved ones around - and of course, passionate cinephiles". I'm assuming if you do have your loved ones around you won't be turned away at the door.
I'm reliably informed my film will be part of the 6:30pm screening Snowflake Shorts on Christmas Eve at the Kino Moviemento. Get your holiday spirit on, meine Freunde!

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Stick Talk

http://www.skwigly.co.uk/podcasts/skwigly-animation-podcast-62/
For our sixty-second episode of the Skwigly Animation Podcast we meet award-winning filmmaker Ann Marie Fleming, whose body of work includes the animated biography The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam (2003) and the adaptation of Bernice Eisenstein’s I Was a Child of Holocaust Survivors (2010) as well as her first full-length NFB animated feature Window Horses, which saw its premiere at Annecy back in June of this year. Having gathered production funds via IndieGogo, the film features Ann Marie’s long-established animated avatar Stickgirl ‘starring’ as Rosie Ming, a Canadian poet whose cultural horizons and perceptions of her family history are broadened when she finds herself invited to participate in a poetry festival in Iran.
Primarily animated by longtime collaborator Kevin Langdale, Window Horses draws upon the talents of multiple artists in the visual depictions of its poetry, including Janet Perlman, Louise Johnson, Jody Kramer, Kunal Sen and Lillian Chan, with Sandra Oh and Ellen Page among its cast. Having screened at a number of major festivals including the Ottawa International Animation Festival, Fantoche International Animation Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival and the Vancouver International Film Festival where it won for Best BC Film and Best Canadian Film, Window Horses will see its UK premiere at the London International Animation Festival on December 11th.
Also discussed in this episode: Children’s BAFTA winners, Oscar contenders for Best Animated Short, the ‘dark turn’ of Cars 3 and the return of the Late Night Work Club, whose second anthology Strangers launched earlier this week.
Stream below, subscribe or direct download:

Monday, 28 November 2016

Something indie this way comes

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/295144060/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
Now that Intimate Animation has wrapped up, today I've finally gotten off my photogenic behind and started a long-in-the-works new Skwigly podcast strand Independent Animation to tie-in more directly with my book. The first episode is nothing special - just a basic introduction to the podcast itself, plus a reading of the actual (abridged) introduction to the book - although what I have planned for the next few will hopefully take things in an exciting new direction, presenting future case studies in more of a documentary format similar to the presentation of the book itself rather than the usual 'talkshow' style podcasts we've done so far. Knock wood in the next one I'll be hearing from some of the talents involved in the second Late Night Work Club (an initiative that perfectly encapsulates the spirit of modern indie animation) anthology Strangers that launched today.
Until then, however, have a listen to my solo ramblings; it can only go up from here:
Should you so desire this episode is available to download.
The timing works out rather well as today the publishers are having a site-wide #CyberMonday sale, and until tomorrow you can pick up a copy of the book with 25% knocked off the price! Not too shabby, eh? Especially considering the holidays are just around the corner and you doubtless have many hard-to-buy-for animation enthusiasts in your life.
Well, worth a shot. If you feel so inclined you can buy it over on the CRC website, but act fast; Cyber Monday, one assumes, comes but once a year.

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Mumians on the Riviera

http://mostramumia.blogspot.co.uk/
Following up on my previous announcement that Klementhro would be back in Brazil this December for the 14th MUMIA Underground World Animation Festival, the festival programme has been published so I can now confirm when and where the screenings will actually take place.
At 4pm on Sunday December 4th festival patrons - Mumians, I've decided should be the collective term - can catch the film as part of the International Competition 8 screening at the Cine Humberto Mauro. Then at 5pm on Wednesday December 7th there will be a repeat screening at the Cine Sesc Palladium.
So there ya go. Oh, it's in Belo Horizonte, by the way. Incidentally MUMIA was one of the last festivals to screen The Naughty List, so it's fitting that it would be among the last to screen this one too. OR WILL IT?
Probably.

Thursday, 24 November 2016

Sextet

Today sees the conclusion of the first season of Intimate Animation, the podcast in which Laura-Beth and myself have been dissecting animation's more lovey-dovey side. Well, mainly we've been talking about animated genitals, but the lovey-doveyness gets a look in every once in a while.
In episode 6 we end things on a bang (I apologise) with the great Andreas Hykade, whose filmography includes the multi-award-winning shorts The Runt (2005), Love and Theft (2010) and Nuggets (2015) as well as the children’s series Tom, produced in association with esteemed German studio Film Bilder. Prominently discussed in this episode is the director’s intense and hallucinatory Western opus Ring of Fire (2000), whose themes of relationships, sexuality and conflict were drawn from his own life. The film would go on to win Best Animated Short at several major festivals including that year’s Ottawa International Animation Festival. As always feel free to either direct download or stream below:
Also discussed in this episode – the threat of tightening UK censorship laws on depictions of ‘non-conventional’ sexuality, Studio Pupil‘s delightful short Tabook (one of my personal favourites from MAF last week) and the bizarrely compelling visuals of Genital Jousting from Free Lives.
Thanks very much to everyone who's supported this new venture, it's proved to be a very valuable extension of the animation conversation Skwigly has endeavoured to keep alive and we're already excited about season 2 next year. We'll be bringing you two other new themed podcasts over the next month or so that I hope will prove to do likewise, in the meantime however if you missed any of the first season of Intimate Animation you can listen to every episode in our handy playlist:

Monday, 21 November 2016

One more for November

http://anilogue.com/2016/index.html
Quick update on my previous post about Klementhro's upcoming screening as part of Hungary's 14th Anilogue International Animation Festival in Budapest - the film will be part of the Programme B which screens 3:30pm this Wednesday (November 23rd) at the Puskin Cinema and the 5pm following day at the Urania National Film Theatre. I'm very humbled to see it's screening alongside some of my favourites of the past year, including films by recent interviewees Dávid Dell'Edera (Balcony), Terri Matthews (The Wrong End of the Stick), Anete Melece (Analysis Paralysis) and Réka Bucsi (Love), the latter two films I was privileged enough to screen myself at MAF last week.
While things do seem to be winding down a bit for our lonely lad Klementhro, there are a couple more confirmed outings on the horizon after this one. Watch this proverbial space, my friends.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

KLIK Tracks

https://soundcloud.com/skwigly/sets/skwigly-at-klik-2016
Despite not being able to attend the event in person, I'm happy to be carrying on last year's tradition of Skwigly mini-podcasts for the KLIK! Amsterdam Animation Festival. As before these consist mainly of short Q&As with attending filmmakers conducted by German animation historian Hans Walther. These include chats with Giovanni Braggio (Cthupid), Junaid Chundrigar (Fixed Fairy Tales: The Princess & the Pea), Fleur Odylle of in60seconds (Manfred the Monkey), Artūrs Lācis (Versus), Carolina Cruz (Balbina: Das IST, die Zeit ist ein Egoist), Evelyne Dubois (Home Sweet Home), Nyan Kyal Say (My Life I Don't Want) and Daphna Awadish (Journey Birds)
One of the talkshow sessions unfortunately got misplaced and so to fill the remaining filmmaker slot my stalwart pal Jo Hepworth gave me some time to discuss her own KLIK! entry The Urban Fox, a lovely piece of work some of you may have caught when I screened it at MAF last year.
You can stream all the entire series below or, if you'd prefer, you can download episodes one, two and three respectively - gratis and for keepsies! Man alive do I ever treat ya right.

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Keeping up appearances

I like my animation festivals like I like my women; COVERED IN BEES...
This week I'll be enjoying my first Manchester Animation Festival. Well, that's not technically accurate as I was there last year, but it was in the final weeks of writing my book before the manuscript deadline and so I was laptop-bound 90% of the time and a jittery, coffee-soaked mess, periodically breaking down and screaming at imaginary dogs that lived behind my eyelids. So happily this will be a more chilled affair.
http://www.manchesteranimationfestival.co.uk/events/book-your-ideas-up-signing/
As with last year I will be involved in some of the events, however, the first of which ties in with the book itself. If you swing by Book Your Ideas Up at the HOME event space around 3:15pm Tuesday 15th I'll be part of a panel of fellow animation book scribes discussing our work. I'll also be signing copies of Independent Animation: Developing, Producing and Distributing Your Animated Films if that's a remotely appealing prospect, plus I'll have some with me if you're on the fence about buying a copy but might be swayed upon seeing one all up close and shiny-like.
http://www.manchesteranimationfestival.co.uk/events/skwigly-screening/
On Wednesday 16th I'll be presenting another Skwigly Screening showcasing some of the best films I've come across in the past year or so, again in the event space at 3:15pm. The full playlist is as follows (the film titles in bold link to recent interviews with the filmmakers):
  • Tiny Encounters (Dani Abram/Lauren Orme/Michael Ostrolenk/Chris Wright, UK, 2016) 
  • Love (Dir. Réka Bucsi, France/Hungary, 2016) 
  • Parrot Away (Dir. Mads Weidner, Denmark, 2015) 
  • Feathers (Dir. Hands On Deck, Canada, 2016) 
  • Le Clitoris (Dir. Lori Malépart-Traversy, Canada, 2016) 
  • Analysis Paralysis (Dir. Anete Melece, Switzerland, 2016) 
  • Eat Up (Dir. Pretend Parent, UK, 2016) 
  • Player 2 (Dir. Charlie Miller/Harry Slinger-Thompson, UK, 2016) 
  • James: Dear John (Dir. Péter Vácz, UK/Hungary, 2016) 
  • Final Call (Dir. Sara Barbas, Portugal/UK/Denmark, 2016) 
  • Wednesday With Goddard (Dir. Nicolas Ménard, UK, 2016)
http://www.manchesteranimationfestival.co.uk/events/skwigly-quiz/
Immediately after that you might want to stick around for the latest Skwigly Quiz that Steve and I will be presenting. These are always a larf and there are some pretty tremendous prizes to be won, because frankly we at Skwigly Corp* spoil your asses rotten.
http://www.manchesteranimationfestival.co.uk/events/skwigly-podcast-live/
On Thursday 18th myself and Steve will be winging it for our first live podcast. Come by the Event Space (we love that space, it's just so...event-y) at 11am to watch it all unravel in person - or, if you can't make it, stream it via our Facebook page. Of course you can check out the full range of nifty MAF events via the festival website, so if you can't stomach the sight of me there's plenty of other stuff to do. Personal recommendations would include a rare UK screening of the beautiful My Life as a Courgette, a Chris Shepherd masterclass and retrospective, not to mention Joanna Quinn's lifedrawing class (kicking myself that I'll be missing that one). Hope to see some of you there!
*Not what we're called.

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Stayin' Down South

http://mostramumia.blogspot.co.uk
While Klementhro's adventures in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo (courtesy of Anima Mundi) came to an end yesterday, some good news for any Brazilians among ye who didn't catch it - or may wish to again - is that the film will be back in the country next month for the 14th Mumia Underground World Animation Festival!
I'm happy to say this isn't the first time my work will be shown at this event, as back in 2012 it was one of the later festivals to screen The Naughty List during its original festival run. I don't have any info more specific than the film will play in the International 8 screening and that the festival takes place in Belo Horizonte from December 1st-18th. More info when I gets it! In the meantime you can check out the full selection here.

Thursday, 3 November 2016

Of course the Samaritans have been told to expect an influx of activity once the listening audience discover I'm off the market

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/291217657/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
Mine and Laura-Beth's love'n'sex'n'stuff podcast series Intimate Animation continues today with episode 5, in which we meet Réka Bucsi, who has followed up her tremendous student short Symphony No. 42 with the multi-award-winning Love.
 
Produced in association with Passion Paris, Boddah and The Animation Workshop, the film premiered at the 66th Berlinale Shorts Competition to immediate acclaim, going on to screen at other prominent festivals including the Ottawa International Animation Festival, AFI Fest, Go Short, Melbourne International Film Festival and the BFI London Film Festival. Manchester Animation Festival passholders will also be able to see the film as part of our Skwigly Screening (alongside Lori Malépart-Traversy’s Le Clitoris, featured in episode 4) later this month - I'll be elaborating on what else will be on offer soon. More recently Love earned a European Film Award nomination at the Uppsala International Short Film Festival as well as being shortlisted for the Cartoon d’Or when it won Best European Short at 3D Wire.
Also discussed in this episode are the broader themes of ‘love’ – beyond romantic and sexual relationships – that animation has effectively tackled, from family fare such as The Nightmare Before Christmas to more challenging work as Ma Vie de Courgette and Mary and Max. Laura-Beth and I also have a special announcement for the benefit of any podcast listeners who haven't heard our recent and rather wonderful news elsewhere. Give it a stream above or a cheeky little direct download.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Another Busy Weekend

http://www.nuitducourt.ch/#/lausanne/
It's been a long journey, but this Friday November 4th will be the final stop of the Nuit du Court Métrage leg of Short Film Nights, the touring programme that has graciously included Klementhro, seeing the film screened throughout Switzerland over the course of this year. The twenty-third and final city on what's been a terrific tour with some brilliant and much-appreciated exposure will be Lausanne, the screening itself taking place at the Pathé les Galeries at 7:25pm. Many thanks again to the Short Film Nights team for bringing my bizarre little film along for the ride!
http://kdiaf.tnua.edu.tw/en
On Saturday November 5th the film will see its Chinese premiere at the KuanDu International Animation Festival in Taiwan. It will be screening in the programme KDIAF's Choice 5 for a relatively early (9am) start. It's another interesting crop I'm very happy and humbled to be amongst, with work from some great artists including Kim Noce, Shaun Clark and Isabelle Favez among others.
On those exact same dates the film will doubtless be befuddling Brazilians over at Anima Mundi. Following the first batch of screenings that took place in Rio de Janeiro, the second wave will be in São Paulo with two screenings at the Cinemateca Brasileira. On November 4th it'll screen at 6pm in the Sala Petrobras, with a 3pm screening in the Sala BNDES the following day.
Tchau for now!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Lucky 14

http://anilogue.com/2016/index.html
Klementhro's adventures continue with two more upcoming festivals I can cheerily reveal. Following last month's Hungarian screening at Busho, in roughly another month's time the film will return to Budapest as part of the 14th Anilogue International Animated Film Festival's competition programme. The programme specifics have not yet been announced but the festival runs from November 23rd to the 27th with event highlights including screenings of Michaël Dudok de Wit's The Red Turtle and Claude Barras's My Life as a Courgette.
http://shortfilms.org.uk
The first (possibly only) screening of 2017 will be a little closer to home, as part of the 14th London Short Film Festival. Out of the 80+ public outings our ginger rafting enthusiast has seen, UK festival screenings have been something of a rarity, so it's very nice that, whether or not this proves to be the end of his journey, Klementhro will eventually wash back up on British soil. Small victories and such. No programme specifics for this festival either right now, but I'll be sure to keep you all up to speed on both fronts.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Briggsian Delight

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/290030109/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
For our sixty-first episode of the Skwigly Animation Podcast we meet Roger Mainwood, director of the much-anticipated animated feature adaptation of the Raymond Briggs classic Ethel & Ernest, out in UK cinemas this Friday. Roger’s industry experience includes Kraftwerk: Autobahn, Heavy Metal and The Wind in the Willows as well as the prior Briggs adaptations The Snowman, When the Wind Blows, Father Christmas and The Snowman and the Snowdog. Also returning to the podcast is the movie’s Art Director Robin Shaw, who previously served as Assistant Director on The Snowman and the Snowdog and is currently co-directing the upcoming We’re Going on a Bear Hunt.
Also discussed in this episode: First impressions of the new DreamWorks offering The Boss Baby, the overwhelming social media response to the short film Borrowed Time, Signe Baumane's uncompromising review of The Red Turtle and The Simpsons joining forces with Google Spotlight Stories.
Stream below, subscribe or direct download:

Monday, 24 October 2016

"Can't pay? We'll literally do everything in our power to not have to take it away, 'cause I got these bad knees, see..."

These days my fictional creation Klementhro, once thought to be a bit of an out-to-sea loner, has way more of a life than I do. As such he has a pretty packed few days of galavanting hither and thither ahead of him while I sit at home watching Can't Pay repeats and praying the various After Effects renders I have cued up don't crash.
http://www.sodakmotion.com/
Klementhro, the comparative socialite, will be enjoying a rare US outing at the SoDak Motion Festival this Thursday, October 27th. Screening alongside work by some excellent filmmakers including Tomer Eshed and fellow Bristol School of Animation grad Simon Acosta, the film will play in the festival's Animation Competition 6:30pm at the South Dakota Art Museum.
Some miles away on the following night, the Nuit du Court Métrage tour will take the film to La Chaux-de-Fonds, where the evening's proceedings will kick off around 8pm at the Cinéma ABC.
The night after that (October 29th, not to condescendingly imply you can't do basic addition) the tour is headed to Neuchâtel, again looking at an 8pm start at the Cinéma Studio.
http://filmes.animamundi.com.br/site/busca?FilmeBuscaForm[sessao]=579&bs=1
On top of all that, the Brazilian animation fest Anima Mundi has unveiled its full programme and, as previously indicated, Klementhro is among the official selection! From tomorrow onwards it will screen as part of Shorts 5 in such fine company as Joost Lieuwma's Paniek! and the times/venues for the Rio de Janeiro screenings (there'll be more in São Paulo next month) are as follows:
Ooh, hang on. I think they're about to finally take something awa- no, false alarm. As you were.

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Anatomy Lesson

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/289145817/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
In the latest episode of our Intimate Animation podcast Laura-Beth and I meet award-winning Concordia graduate filmmaker Lori Malépart-Traversy, whose student short Le Clitoris has generated a great deal of buzz since it premiered in June of this year.  The film uses traditional 2D animation techniques to tell the story of the oft-misunderstood clitoris and how its standing in society has changed over the centuries, from the patriarchal attitudes of the Catholic Church to the dismissive theories of its ‘Enemy Number 1’ Sigmund Freud.
Having won the Audience Award at Womanimation! and Best International Student Short Film at Animasivo, the film’s ongoing festival run includes showings at Ottawa, Anima Syros, KROK, FAFF, Anim’est and the TIAS Animation Showcase, with upcoming screenings at Anima Mundi, KLIK! Amsterdam Animation Festival, DOK Leipzig and Sommets du cinéma d’animation.
Subscribe, direct download or stream below:

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

"...ma perlomeno ha un remo..."

http://www.nuitducourt.ch/#/lugano-21-ottobre-2016/
The next date for Nuit du Court Métrage - or Notte del Cortometraggio, as it happens - will be October 21st in Lugano. This stop will have an earlier start of 7pm at the LUX Art House, for 'aperitivo con DJ' - pretty swish! As ever Klementhro will be part of the Happy Aging program that will begin at 9:45pm. 
Grazie!

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Bonnes Nuits

http://www.nuitducourt.ch/#/morges/
More meandering for our man Klementhro, as he continues to paddle his way through unsuspecting Swiss territories! If you happen to be in our near Morges in Switzerland on October 14th then why not mosey on down to the Cinéma Odéon for 8pm and check out the Nuit du Court Métrage programme? From the feedback that's been trickling through I gather these nights have proved great fun, so I'm very happy to be along for the ride. More tour stops to come!

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Golden Oldies

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/286119847/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
For our sixtieth episode of the Skwigly Animation Podcast we’re proud to feature an interview from this year’s Canterbury Anifest in which Skwigly contributor Neil Whitman meets Peter Firmin of Smallfilms, the production company that brought the UK such timeless classics as Bagpuss, The Clangers, Noggin the Nog and Ivor the Engine. Joining Peter is Daniel Postgate, son of the late Smallfilms co-founder Oliver Postgate who has actively continued and commemorated his father’s legacy through the recent Clangers revival, presently in production on its second series.
Also discussed in this episode – the staying power of animated preschool classics, the end of a modern TV animation era as Adventure Time and Archer draw to a close, Disney’s questionable propensity toward ‘live-action’ remakes of their animated features plus a preview of the exciting events on offer at this year’s forthcoming edition of the Manchester Animation Festival.
Stream below, subscribe or direct download:

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Baked Goods

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/282842718/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
Following the previous episode featuring Anna Ginsburg on her film Private Parts, episode three of Intimate Animation effectively bookends the past week or so of Encounters coverage with a look at another Late Lounge entry. Laura-Beth and I got to have a lovely chat with attending filmmakers V Veronica L. Montaño and Manuela Leuenberger as the festival was winding down to talk a little bit more about their brilliant Lucerne School of Art and Design grad film Ivan’s Need. We previously heard from both of them (along with fellow filmmaker Lukas Suter, who wasn't at Encounters unfortunately) during the KLIK! Amsterdam Animation Festival last year but as it's a film that Laura-Beth and I both adore we were keen to chat a bit more about how it came to be.
Also discussed in this episode are more abstract animation approaches to themes of love and sex, including Réka Bucsi‘s beautifully-made new film Love and Grant Orchard‘s mograph microshort Yeah Just There. If you're not in a streaming mood here's the ol' download link for late-night listening.
On the significantly less saucy subject of Klementhro, there are two opportunities early in October to catch the film in Germany. Firstly this Sunday October 2nd it will play as part of the first Animation Competition screening at 4pm alongside some great work including Job, Joris and Marieke's A Single Life. The festival takes place at Paul-Wunderlich-Haus, if you fancy swinging by you can buy tickets here.
http://www.filmzeitkaufbeuren.de/
The following week on Saturday October 8th the film is screening at Filmzeit Kaufbeuren in the Filmblock V programme, which kicks off at 8pm at the Stadttheater Kaufbeuren. You can download the full programme here for more info.
http://www.nuitducourt.ch/fribourg/
In between both of these there will be another stop on the Nuit du Court Métrage tour for any Swiss short film enthusiasts among you. The touring programme's first October stop will be in Fribourg on Friday 7th at the Cinemotion-Les Rex, kicking off at 8:15pm. All told it's going to be a busy month ahead for Klementhro and happily I can confirm that he'll still be doing the rounds through til January 2017 at least. There's life in the old seadog yet, evidently. Watch this space for updates!

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

The Magnificent Seven

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The final Q&A session from last week's Encounters festival is now up on Skwigly, and we're going out on a high with seven animation filmmakers sharing some insight into their work and processes, whose films screened as part of the animation programmes It’s Only Natural, A Look Inside and Art & Design. Listen below to hear from Sean Vicary and Samantha Moore, whose quasi-documentary films The Nose and Loop respectively were both commissioned for the Wellcome Trust. We also have some more abstract work from animation directors Paul McKelvie (Rorschach Kristalle), Francisca Villela (A Better Situation) and David Buob (Me By You). Ruben Leaves director Frederic Siegel also returns to the podcast (having previously appeared in our Skwigly at KLIK! minisode series) and to round things off we have Croatian director Marko Dješka on his film Ghost Town. As always you can direct download, should you so desire.
Many thanks to Kieran Argo and Kellie Hasbury for all of their assistance in getting everything sorted last week, it was a fantastic edition of the festival and I'm keen to share more about it with you all later in the week. If you've not yet caught the previous filmmaker Q&A minisodes then I've put them all together in a handy playlist:

Monday, 26 September 2016

"Chasing the night away..."

http://www.nuitducourt.ch/
It's a double-screening for our lad Klementhro this Friday in Switzerland! Continuing the fabulous Nuit du court métrage tour the film is part of, there will be two simultaneous showings in Yverdon (at the Bel Air cinema) and Sion (at Cinéma Arlequin), both of which kick off at 8pm.
http://www.bierkellerlive.info/chuck-mosely.html
Would that I could be at either myself - as it happens that particular night I will be gleefully seeing Chuck Mosley (or Mosely, depending on which album sleeve you read) in concert as he's had the good manners to come to Bristol and play just down the road from me. Mr. Mosley was the predecessor to Mike Patton as the original vocalist for Faith No More, a band I may have voiced some enthusiasm for once or twice. Although the band found major fame after his tenure they undoubtedly made some amazing music together and I count plenty of the tunes he sang on as amongst my favourites. Also 'Introduce Yourself' was the first Faith No More album chubby li'l me was able to save up enough pocket money to afford and so it will always hold a special place in my heart.
The show is part of his ongoing European tour and proceeds are going to the homeless charity Crisis, so any Bristol folks out there should definitely swing by the Bierkeller this Friday night.
https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/284676906/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
Meanwhile my Encounters/Skwigly Q&A sessions continue today as I meet attending filmmakers whose films screened as part of the animation programme It’s Only Natural - Lissi Muschol (Producer, The Wild Boar), Cartoon d'Or nominee David Dell’Edera (Dir. Balcony), Simon Scheiber (Dir. The Lighthouse) and Tomek Ducki (Dir. Emily King: The Animals).
Listen below or direct download. It's a dirty job, but someone's gotta do it.

Friday, 23 September 2016

Semi-Brief Encounters

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It's been a fun first few days at the Encounters festival here in Bristol, and for the second Q&A Skwigly podcast minisode we meet filmmakers whose work screened as part of the animation programmes The Weight of Humanity and Top of the Class. Recent graduates Jennifer Zheng (with her Kingston University film Tough) and Jodie Haslam (with her UWE Bristol School of Animation film The Race) are joined by Ben O’Conner, director of A Terrible Hullabaloo. Then animator Joseph Wallace and Meryn Cobbin of Picasso Pictures discuss their work on the stop motion James music video Dear John, directed by Péter Vácz (you can learn more from Joseph and Peter about the project in my recent feature article on the project). Also we meet Luc Gut (OS Love) and Gábor Osváth, the producer of Réka Bucsi's gorgeous new film Love.
I'll be taking the weekend to break things up a bit, so all being well episode 3 will go up on Monday. In the meantime you can stream episode 2 below or download for later listenin'.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

The Post Show

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As mentioned yesterday, I'm putting together a series of Skwigly Podcast Minisodes for this year's Bristol Encounters festival. Showcasing a diverse range of animation techniques, this year’s official selection is rock solid, combining local and international talent, and I'm delighted to have the opportunity to run the audience Q&A sessions after each screening. Recorded after yesterday's evening screening, in this first episode we meet attending filmmakers whose films were included as part of the animation programme Moving Pictures: Zoltán Aprily (Dir. Ungvár), Sara Barbas (Dir. Final Call), Yolanda Barker/Claire Winter (Director/Animator, After I Saw You), Mike Brookes (Dir. The Petard Pinch), Anete Melece (Dir. Analysis Paralysis) and Charlie Miller (Co-director, Player 2)
You can download episode 1 here or stream it below:

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

String Theory

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The indefatigable Skwigly Animation Podcast is creeping up to its sixtieth episode, and I'm stoked that in our latest we welcome back LAIKA President and CEO Travis Knight, talking about his directorial debut Kubo and the Two Strings. Granted it's only a slightly longer version of the video interview I posted earlier in the month, but frankly I'm shouting from the rooftops about this film as much as I possibly can.
Also in this episode Steve and I mull over why the film doesn't appear to have gotten as many bums on seats as it should have as well as the various approaches a film's marketing campaign can take, in particular comparing the approaches of Disney's Moana and Dreamworks' Trolls. I also unearth a buried memory of an old animation I've never been able to track down for decades, so give it a listen (or a direct download for later) and see if you can help me out.
Some more animationey goodness to look forward to is the newly-launched programme for the second Manchester Animation Festival. As with its inaugural edition I'll be helping out here and there for a few of the events but here's an overall preview of their programme as broadcast live from their Facebook page earlier this evening:
Before then it's the Encounters festival here in Bristol this week. This year as part of Skwigly's media partnership with the event I'm doing a series of post-screening Q&A sessions that will start going up tomorrow. If you're in town be sure to swing by Waterside 1 at The Watershed immediately after each competition screening, roughly 1:30pm and 7:30pm each day until the end of the week.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Floating along

http://www.nuitducourt.ch/#/geneve/
The nomadic Klementhro continues his Swiss travels this weekend as part of the ongoing Nuit du court métrage tour he finds himself on. First stop is Geneva, a city I unexpectedly wound up spending some time in earlier this year when my flight was delayed and I missed my shuttle to Annecy (the full horrorshow was documented in that week's podcast - it turned out to be a luvverly day in the end). Proceedings will kick off at Les Cinémas du Grütli from 8pm on Friday September 23rd.
The following night anyone in or around Delémont may wish to mosey on down to Cinemont and catch the programme there, again beginning at 8pm. Would that I could join old Klem on his travels; at this point he's getting out way more than I am.
That's all I gots for you today, folks. As you were.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Bits and bobs. Mainly bits.

https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/282842718/download?client_id=02gUJC0hH2ct1EGOcYXQIzRFU91c72Ea
After a warm response to episode one, Laura-Beth and I gleefully soldiering on with our new Skwigly podcast series Intimate Animation. In this episode we discuss the effectiveness of animation in conveying sex-related topics such as Project Consent and work by filmmakers including Sam Morrison and Ruth Lingford.
We also meet talented director Anna Ginsburg whose Random Acts/It's Nice That short film project Private Parts is screening at both Encounters and Ottawa next week. There are some keen insights from Anna that we're really happy to be able to share and on the whole I'm feeling very positive about this new endeavour which, as always, you can stream above or direct download.
http://taff.fi/2016/en/screenings/ship-ahoy/
As well as what you hear in the podcast segment we also discuss Anna's other work (will put up a written feature going into these soon) and her recent travels. As it turns out, Finland's Turku Animated Film Festival that she just returned from had, unbeknownst to me, included Klementhro in one of its guest programmes Ship Ahoy! that took place on the unfortunately named S/S Bore. As best I can tell this was in association with its screening in the Czech Republic back in April, so much belated thanks to them!
http://www.sodakmotion.com/
While the film is screening from tomorrow through to Saturday at Ukraine's Linoleum Festival I've also gotten wind that it will be part of South Dakota's SoDak Motion Festival that takes place in late October. Stateside screenings have always been something of a rarity for me so that's very pleasant news indeed. More specifics when I get 'em.