Category: Animatic

As a filmmaker, it made sense for me to make this animatic-ad for the graphic novel and film project. I’ll do more of these, perhaps eventually turning the entire graphic novel into an animatic. The end goal is to make it easy for potential producers to see how a live-action film might play out. It’s much easier to experience the feel and pace this way, with the added power of music and editing.

I’m back. It’s been 6 weeks since I last posted, but things are still keeping on.
The NFVF got back to me, (5 months after submitting my script) and said they’d like to develop the script on their Master’s program. Which is an honour, but I’d rather have development finance, thanks very much.
I’ve been showing the script to a few people. One super person who’s very involved in internet development, loved it, which is a big boost for me.
I’m still trying to get producers to just read the script, even the first few pages. This is incredibly difficult, so work continues on my animatic. The frame above gives you an idea of what it’ll look like. I’ve always drawn storyboards from my head, but have recently discovered the possibilities of copying…
I went to see an awesome Tretchikoff exhibit recently and noticed how he divided pictured into a grid and copied them. And so did Mucha, one of my favorite drawing inspirations.
So I’m doing the same, taking frame grabs from videos that match scenes I like, dividing the image with prestik-markers on my screen and copying onto my paper drawing pad.
Lena is drawn from grabs of Catherine Deneuve, from a wonderful movie called ‘Manon 70‘.
The frames are scanned, turned into transparencies, then put onto a timeline with music and VO. I’ve done about 90 frames, only another 900 to go… Give me about 2 months…

The Next Phase

It might not look like much, but this is it – the next stage of my script’s development. I’m laying the script out on an editing timeline, placing a marker for each scene.

In script-writing, typically 1 page of script represents 1 minute of film time. So by judging the length of a scene on a page, I’ve stretched each scene marker to match that length of screen time. Some markers are 10 seconds, others 3 minutes. But by looking at this timeline, I get a pretty good idea of where the film slows down, and where the scene changes speed up the pace.

I’ve also started recording the voices of actors and am about to start laying these sounds up. And with music and SFX. it’ll start sounding like a radio play, but at this early stage, there’s not a lot of emphasis on performance, it’s more about timing and how the story plays out.

In between the scene cards I’m going to start placing simple storyboard images, (just one for each scene to start with). It’s a lot of work, but it’s giving me a great feel for the pace of the script.

This is a very organic process of trying to get as much done as possible to make it easier for producers to ‘see’ my movie. It’s about taking out as much risk as possible. It seems pretty logical to me and I know animation movies follow a similar path. Pixar typically spend the 1 year of a 3 year development cycle doing just this – giving a script to a storyboard artist and working and reworking an animatic with a director, recording voices, placing temporary music and SFX.

Hopefully my process won’t take a year… I’m aiming for getting it done in 2-3 months. Let’s see how it goes…