Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Florida Film Festival

Last night I attended the Florida Film Festival Animated Shorts Program in Orlando. The highlight for me was the final film, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. The film was created by Moonbot Studios and featured work by my friend Joe Bluhm (in fact, if you watch the end credits you'll see Joe literally has his fingerprints all over the film). Joe was on hand with director Brandon Oldenburg and Adam Volker to answer questions after the show.
The story is by children's book author and illustrator William Joyce, whose works include Robots, Meet the Robinsons and Rolie Polie Olie, the latter of which was adapted into a television show for preschoolers. My kids loved Rolie Polie Olie when they were younger and it was always fun for me to watch as well.
The Fantastic Flying Books of Morris Lessmore utilizes a combination of 2D animation, CGI and miniatures. The animation is amazing. What a gorgeous, touching film. It was SO refreshing to watch some finely crafted animation that didn't have to rely on 3-D effects, celebrity voices or fart jokes. This was a gentle, powerful film that challenged, not insulted or underestimated, its audience.

Moonbot studios easily has a hit on their hands. In fact, they just won the Florida Film Festival Audience Award for Animated Shorts. I can't wait to see what Moonbot Studios does next.  Below is a short trailer for the film.

You can find out more at the Moonbot Studios website HERE, and more about Morris Lessmore HERE.

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