adventure and absurdity in making an animated short

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

the credits

this painting by van gogh was the inspiration for the last image with eve and wall-e looking at the tree. we knew we wanted to end the cards here. only make it a little greener.

So with the release of the Wall-E DVD this past week I thought I'd say a few things about making the credits. After finishing Your Friend the Rat, Andrew asked me if I wouldn't mind taking on the credits for his film. A great honor for me since Andrew hired me at pixar in '97 and we've had a good time working together since. The idea for the credits, to follow the re-evolution of humanity told through the history of art, was devised by one of our story artists, Kevin O'Brien. I was given the task along with fellow YFtR alums Alex Woo and Scott Morse to figure out how to get all of art history, tell the story of the recolonization of the earth and respect the names of the people who worked on the film all in 2 minutes (+5 for the crawl). The one issue we kept finding was after you knew the humans were going to survive the credits kind of lost steam. So we decided to leave it at survival. They are running around now, they are human proportions again and animals are back. Circling back to the boot seemed like a no brainer.

The credits were exicuted by a pretty small staff. I believe all together including production support we were 12 people. Mostly done in After Effects, by Chris O'Dowd and Alex Woo with a smatering of hand animation by Alex, Bob Scott and Kristophe Vergne. Most of the team had worked on YFtR. John Lee who handled painting all the painterly cards - Turner, Surat, van Gogh blew my mind when he actually pulled off the looks, then Willy Hwang our expert cell painter from YFtR, hand painted the bird (animated by Kristophe Vergne) to match, I knew we had something pretty cool. The 8 bit idea came from Alex and Scott and Scott designed all the characters. It was animted in After Effects by Catherine Kelly. All the text is by Pixar's resident text mavine Susan Bradley. The whole team did a great job and it turned out to be a really fun experience as well as a neat little short in it's own right. Oh and I got to meet Peter Gabriel.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


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