Tuesday, 16 December 2008

pictures of little face

I have made a couple of publicity stills for Little Face. I don't think they will stand up to billboard size scrutiny but they do the job. More will follow.

Monday, 15 December 2008

little face achieves italic status

Before Christmas comes and goes and flowers start growing again it seems appropriate for me to update my blog. It has been quiet sometime since I last updated my blog and some people thought I had died. At least I assume that is the case. No one has called.

I also think my co-worker and flatmate Felix Massie has become tired of saying "you should update your blog Matthew" to which I always reply "I know, I will". The other week I even teased Felix Massie with the possibility by spending an hour and a half writing an extensive post detailing the months exploits which I subsequently failed to post.

This is not that post. It is all new (except for the paragraph about the UK Film Council, I copied and pasted some of that).

Two events of note have taken place in the many weeks since my last post; Little Face was completed and I went to Taiwan. But not in that order. That was the order I hoped those events would happen but Little Face (note the italics, that is because it is now an actual film and not a film-to-be) has been like the Duracell Bunny, he just keeps going and going. Or at least he did until we finally finished it just over a week ago. Even the Duracell Bunny will die eventually. Surely.

We did have some last minute comments from the UK Film Council (who funded the film) during the last week of production. They had various problems with it and had a lot of comments and suggestions. It was frustrating at first, a few of the comments we disagreed with, but some we did agree with and it made us look at the film in a new light and try to address some issues that we had been ignoring or failed to recognise before. It was good because I think we had got to a stage where we were so close to the film that it was hard to have any perspective on it. I haven't liked the film much for a while now but I've not been sure if it was because it wasn't very good or just because I was utterly sick of it. The feedback helped Ben (Lole, co-director of the film) and I take a step back and recognise the things about the film that we didn't think were working and that could be improved.

I am very pleased that Little Face is finally finished although my feelings about the film itself are mixed; I am somewhere between completely hating it and not liking it very much. I have been too close to it for too long and am very much sick of it so hopefully my opinion is not an accurate reflection of its qualities. People who have seen it so far seem to have liked it but its going to be at least two years before I can watch the film with sufficient distance to decide if they were being truthful or just polite. Chris Grimes, the voice of Little Face (no italics here as I am referring to Little Face the character not Little Face the film title, I don't know why I have explained this in brackets or even made that distinction), said he really enjoyed it so I was really pleased about that. Adam Buxton, who played Nathan, has not seen it yet so he does not know what he thinks of it.

Regardless of whether the film is any good, Ben and I are pleased with what we achieved. It was a good experience that we learnt a lot from. I look forward to making a live-action film that doesn't involve the added head-ache of trying to incorporate an animated character with out any prior technical experience. On the subject though, I think the compositor Jon Biggins, did an excellent job of making Little Face look as convincing as possible next to Adam Buxton, who was very convincing.

I will post a clip and some publicity photos when we can bring ourselves to do the work necessary to make that possible. It has been nice spending a week doing things that have nothing to do with Little Face. It has been a year since the film was commissioned and it is strange that "How is Little Face?" is no longer a very valid question.

Now for that other event; Taiwan. That was much more fun then Little Face and I only allowed the fact that Little Face was not finished worry me a little bit. I went to Taiwan for the Golden Horse International Film Festival in Taipei. John and Karen was nominated in the Animation Shorts competition. The festival is primarily feature films and lasts 10 days, the animation competition took place over 2 days in the middle of the festival. I was there for 8 days altogether and I had a really good time. I did not want to return (and not just because Little Face was waiting for me). I loved Taipei, especially the night markets. The food was really cheap and really good, I don't think many people cook in Taiwan. They all eat out.

I hope I can go again sometime. The more time I spend outside of the UK the more boring I find the UK. If I was a politician or a celebrity I would probably have to apologise for that comment but I mean it. I'll take night markets over Joe Kebab any time.

Karen was on the other side and she was also to scale!

Probably a restaurant.

The traffic in Taipei consists of mopeds, taxi's and other.

Shilin night market!