Interview with Filmmaker Claire Campbell (WINTER’S BLIGHT)

WINTER’S BLIGHT was the winner of BEST VISUAL DESIGN at the April 2020 ANIMATION Feedback Film Festival.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Claire Campbell: I’d been wanting to make another stop motion film for a few years, because stop motion animation and production design is what I’m really passionate about. Prior to this film I was working in other areas of filmmaking and when there was a window of free time I decided it was finally time to come up with a script for my own project.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

A long time…roughly 3 years!

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Bleak, but hopeful.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

My own perfectionism. I knew the level of detail I wanted to achieve and was determined not to compromise on it. I worked on most of the main elements myself, so it was very time consuming and draining over that extended period, I drove myself a bit insane.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

It was very moving to hear people talk about my film & to hear that they were also moved by the story. Living in a small city at the bottom of New Zealand is a bit isolating & I haven’t been able to go to any of the overseas festivals to experience how it is received, so it was really incredible to get this feedback.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

I was racking my brains for a stop motion script idea to submit for a funding deadline. My past experience with stop motion had taught me what were some good parameters to help keep the idea achievable as stop motion such as limiting the numbers of characters and sets, so I had that as a starting block. At the time I was going on a lot of walks, and being inspired by nature & the remoteness of the Otago landscape, so the elements were all floating in my mind and eventually sort of just fell together and a story formed.


7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably either Coraline or Fantastic Mr Fox. Both films were released in my final year of study when I made a stop motion film as my main project, so I remember really studying them frame by frame to figure out how they made it all & always go back to them for inspiration.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s a big help with the festival submission process, bringing it all into the one place and making it easier to manage it all.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Temptation by New Order.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I’m working on a few more smaller animation & design projects, where I can develop my style without the restraints I imposed on myself for Winter’s Blight.

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Interview with Filmmaker Claudia M. Ruiz (AILIN ON THE MOON)

AILIN ON THE MOON was the winner of BEST ANIMATION film at the June 2020 Animation FEEDBACK Film Festival.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Claudia M. Ruiz: From an experience, it made me think about how in the universe of young children, everything is possible, and the limit of reality and fantasy is very labile, and in that world, the word of the adult is so important and builds a world for him.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

This story happened 20 years ago. I worked on it in a couple of script labs, but only in 2018 did I earn the funds to do it, and also found the visual way to tell it.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Tenderness and poetry.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

The time, the funds we got to make it were minimal, so I had to respect the filming schedule and post to get to finish it. So the love we all put in was so much greater than the financial reward.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

It was a tremendous emotion, seeing how they saw every detail of acting, of construction, seeing the emotion in their expressions. It was incredibly beautiful. I would have loved to be there and give you a hug!

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

It is based on a true story that happened to a friend, and she just told me about the anguish that her little daughter Ailín felt when she threatened “revoke her” to the moon. The girl thought she was going to be alone, she wouldn’t have her toys, she would be hungry. Then it made me think about the value and weight that adult words have on children.

I wanted to show on one hand the weight of the word, and also the loneliness that a child feels with a scream.

So once I had more or less the common thread, the formal search was how to transmit that in a poetic way so that children could watch it, tell them that they can say “I don’t want you to treat me like this, it hurts me”.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Cinema Paradiso, The Journey of Chijiro, Dumbo.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I love it, because it allows me to get to places and festivals that I did not know, to show my film in a simple way, without the terrible work that was before sending everything to each place. Wonderful.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Imagine

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I am currently filming an animated documentary series on children’s rights, and writing a feature film.

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Interview with Filmmaker Petros Niamonitakis (ONE DAY ONE FLY)

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Petros Niamonitakis: I think I was suddenly bitten by a fly

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

-We worked on this project for about 1 year and a half counting a few breaks in between

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

-Fun & tragic

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

-Fortunately, there was no obstacle. Everything went smoothly except the 3D rendering I guess.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

-Public opinion is the probably the toughest judge to win over. At the same time having positive reactions is the best reward for a director. That’s why it usually makes me both nervous and excited. The overall feeling was very pleasant and I feel grateful for every one of them and I want to thank them very much.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:


6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

-I got the idea for this film by the irresistible notion of “creativity for fun”.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

-Hard to remember, as I usually watch the movies I like again and again. I think the easiest answer would be “the Eraserhead by David Lynch”.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

-I thought it is very user friendly. At least to me.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

-Beautiful boy by John Lennon

10. What is next for you? A new film?

-As we found ourselves with tons of free time because of the quarantine
(due to covid 19) I have already finished a new animation short film entitled ” The Day After C”.

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Interview with Filmmaker Christina Hibner (UNIFIED THEORY)

UNIFIED THEORY was awarded BEST SOUND & MUSIC at the April 2020 Animation Feedback Film Festival.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Christina Hibner: This was a student thesis film I created as a final project for graduate school at SVA. I feel there are not enough scientific cartoons that explain how the world works in a fun and engaging way. I wanted to build that bridge for people.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

A little over a year.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Transcendental trip

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

This was my first short film after learning what after effects was only a year prior. Getting up to the speed of my vision for this film was a real challenge.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

Wowie! They are talking about my film!? It made my heart glow with pride.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

I come from a scientific background. I got my BA in physics in 2017 so I have always really been inspired by science. I would sit in class and try to understand how the world works. In my first month of art classes, I noticed the way my professor was talking reminded me of my science classes in that he was showing us how the world inside the animation program works except this time, I had the power to control every element. This made me feel like a god in training where I was the one creating the reality inside the animation program. This got me thinking about being a creator and how even the greatest ones have to start learning from somewhere. Making mistakes are an important part of learning.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

I don’t watch a ton of movies, I am more of a TV person. that being said, I have seen the South Park Movie many times over.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s a convenient place to apply to a variety of festivals and get information on them as well as pay all in one place.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

According to my Spotify, that would be Woodstock by Jon Bellion although recently I have had Beetlejuice the Musical on loop.


10. What is next for you? A new film?

For now I am working at a medical supplies company as a photographer/ video graphics person but I do plan on creating more shorts in my free time.

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Interview with Filmmaker Kevin Barwick (SERPENDIPITY)

SERPENDIPITY was awarded BEST CHARACTERS at the April 2020 ANIMATION Feedback Film Festival.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Kevin Barwick: I was motivated by the fresh take on the well known character of Medusa. With this film it was exciting to explore the boundaries between grounded and fantasy storytelling.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

This Animated short took 2 years from idea to finished product.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Whimsically inviting

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

As we developed the film, our team was still learning the fundamental techniques of the industry. Our biggest obstacle came in the big risks where we didn’t know if a task would turn out successful, due to our limited technical vocabulary. It’s scary to feel under qualified but I think these risks are essential for growth.


5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I’m honored every time someone is able to ingest out film. The experience is surreal.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

The idea is an amalgamation of 16 gifted artists coming together to tell a story.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

The most viewed film in my life would be The Lion King.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s relieving having an accessible platform, such as filmfreeway, that unifies the breadth of festivals and film makers allover the globe.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

I’m an avid music enthusiast, so one song wouldn’t reflect myself. I’m a fan of the intricacy of jazz, the power behind rock, and the catch of pop.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

A new film is definitely in the works. This one will be a longer process and a smaller team but I’ll always be creating art for all to enjoy.

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Interview with Filmmaker Julian Friedrich (01)

01 was the winner of BEST FILM at the June 2018 Animation FEEDBACK Film Festival in Toronto.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Julian Friedrich: “01” is the first film out of the Shortfilm label “Second Truth” in which Artists, film makers, musicians and journalists from all over the world are grappling with the social and political issues of our time. The resulting music videos (Melts) do not include any words and are a mixture of music clips and short films.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you
to make this short?

Nearly 1,5 Years. When Katharina and I decided to make a film in 2015, the refugee crisis in Europe was at its peak. Katharina is an extraordinary illustrator. Her paintings are simple, have a child-like line. But each line is exactly where it should be. It was hard to find the technique to keep the elegiac, the calmness in them.

We spent half a year researching, interviewing and viewing material. The more we were immersed in the cosmos of refugees, we understood how naive and small we had initially thought. All our first ideas were far behind reality.

Stories I’ll never forget are f.e. about a woman who could no longer open doors because after relatives visit her the relatives were killed by a bomb in front of her house. After this incident she was afraid that if she closes a door, everything will be gone behind it. I will never forget the interview with an 18-year-old boy who was the only survivor of a refugee boat full of children of his age. He was with his brother. His voice was so fragile. People are shot dead by locals on a stage in the mountains. Just like that, someone next to you falls to the floor. Dead.

We wanted to show all of it with best intentions, but we understood if we really integrated everything, people would turn off. You can’ t stand it or even worse, think it is an exaggeration. That’s why we’ve focused on the emotional world. We, as audience, may not share the experiences, but we share their feelings. And we focused on them. With the music, with the fantastic pictures of Katharina.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

very emotional

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

Our own point of view.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking
about your film in the feedback video?

I bit my foot (not instantly). We were very touched by this. We are amazed and delighted that people on the other side of the globe are thinking about the same questions. We really are a global village and should work together as human beings.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

There are 68 million people on the run out there. Out of poverty or danger of death. We can’t build fences around everything, it’s physically impossible. If we send them away, we just move the problem to somewhere else. The causes do not disappear. Unless we, the Western world, its way of life and ignorance, which is the origin of this escape, do not change. We have either ignored these people or exploited them economically. Our standard of living is built on poverty. That’s how our world works. No one turns his back on his home country out of fun. We have to change, not them.

If a person cannot live a life worth living in the place, then it is his human right to seek an opportunity. We’ve been all refugees once and maybe we become again sooner than we think. Think about climate change.

68 Million! In 2018, more than 1000 people drowned in the Mediterranean. In view of these numbers, there is no point in continuing to rely on an inefficient, inhumane policy of isolation. Whether more wallets are stolen or not in Berlin, New York or Tokyo is irrelevant in comparison to accepting that people lose their lives. We need institutions that control these flight movements and give people chances. Everything else is political stupidity. If we do this wisely, we all benefit.

We still have too little understanding and empathy for these processes. Art must begin to address these problems.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings
of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

good.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Horses don’t puke. (John Saber)

10. What is next for you? A new film?

“Second Truth” is currently producing “02” with a wonderful Painter Alex Divisenko about the War in Ukraine and it’s fruits in the social medias. We cooperate with the national Puppet theatre of Kiev for “03” about hate. We work with a Syrian dance company “Sham” for “04” a dance through Rom. We work with a talented film maker Peter Drenzin on a half documentary about a homeless person in “05”.

The people who publish Melts (second truth Shortfilm) under “Second Truth” want to expand our horizons – to offer us an alternative. A second truth. Keep in touch about the latest news and listen or download the songs http://www.second-truth.com or support us with your friendship https://www.facebook.com/secondtruthinitiative/ . Thank you!

01
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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every single month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 3 times a month. Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

Interview with Animator/Filmmaker Ran Sheng (STAR RUNNER)

STAR RUNNER played to rave reviews at the June 2018 Animation FEEDBACK Film Festival in Toronto.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Ran Sheng: I am a big fan of sci-fi novels and films, and I keep thinking about those classical philosophy questions, such as who am I? Where I came from, and where am I going? This film could be seen as my answer to these questions.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

This film belongs to the junior year film project of my college so it was in a pretty narrow time frame. I think it took me about 10 weeks.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Evolution + History

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

I must say it was the very narrow time frame. 10 weeks sounds not bad but I actually have other 4 classes at the same time – that means a lot of work and time management skills.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I was surprised by hearing how the host describes my film. It is always great to learn from other people’s perspectives. Also, I really enjoy having all the feedback from the audience. It is the first time my film been public screened, so all those feedback means a lot to me!

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

It’s a long story. Basically, I was inspired by a short sci-fi novel written by famous Chinese sci-fi writer Liu Cixin. It is a story about how much human being willing to pay for the ultimate truth and answer of our universe. If you are interested, I would suggest you watch this short film about the making of Star Runner.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

I wasn’t really counting them but I think probably it is Terminator 2.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I love it and think it is a wonderful platform for filmmakers all over the world.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

I have a wide variety of favored music so I really couldn’t tell. But I am very sure that during the making of Star Runner, the most listened song was Human, by The Killers.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

Definitely, I am finishing my thesis film for my Animated Arts program in PNCA. It is another short animation film. I would love to share it with FEEDBACK. It would be great if I may have a discount on submit fee as a returning filmmaker, haha!

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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every single month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 3 times a month. Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

Interview with Filmmaker Sarah Gampel (THE BUS TRIP)

THE BUS TRIP was the WINNER of BEST ANIMATION at the May 2018 ANIMATION FEEDBACK Film Festival in Los Angeles.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Sarah Gampel: My motivation for making this film came after a trip I did in Israel and Palestine during the spring 2014. I went there to take part in a Film Festival Bus trip with international film students traveling around Israel showing short films. When I came home to Sweden I was overwhelmed by the experience and the emotions I felt during that trip, so I decided to make a film about it.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

It took me about 1 and a half year to finish the film. It started out as my graduation project from film school. We had one year to make a short. But I needed 6 more months and so I was lucky to find funding to be able to finish the film, after I’ve graduated.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Layered experience

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

The biggest obstacle or challenge during the making the film was writing the script and finding a way to combine both political opinions and personal feelings in a comprehensive way.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

This is one of the best feedback session I’ve ever had. People were being honest and sharing their thoughts unconstrained. It’s not too common that people share their honest opinion, and especially not when there is some sort of critic involved. And as a filmmaker it can be difficult to hear negative comments about ones film, it puts me as a filmmaker in a defensive position. But the critic I got to hear here made me feel the opposite. I could tell that the audience had really watched my film carefully and given it a lot of thought before they spoke, I could hear it in the way they talked about it. So even if some of them were criticizing parts of my film I can understand what they mean and almost agree with them. It also makes me proud and happy that my film is seen seriously and good enough to get criticized.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video of the Short Film:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

When I came home from my trip in Israel and Palestine I wrote a travel diary, depicting what I’ve experienced during the days. The text was mostly informative and only describing my activities day by day and my political opinions about Israel and Palestine. So when I’ve written the text I felt like I still had a lot of emotions from the trip that I wanted to share, and this became the starting point for the film.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

I usually don’t re-watch films, but I just re-watched The Never Ending Story from 1984. Think it’s amazing how relevant it still feels and that the film feels scarier the older I get.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s a great and user friendly platform. Specially the feedback section where filmmakers get to review the film festivals according to how they treat their filmmakers. This helps a lot when you decide which festivals are worth the submission fee.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

That’s a difficult question. I listen to a lot of different kinds of music and it’s a big inspiration for my filmmaking. But I remember when The Sky Was Pink by Nathan Fake in the James Holden remix-version came out and me and my friends would listen to it at least once or twice a night, either at a party or after hours. I can never get tired of this tune.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

Two things: First of all my film ‘The Bus Trip’ just got on the streaming platform Seed&Spark. So now everyone who hasn’t seen it yet can stream it through either their website, ROKU och APPLE TV.

Here’s the link: https://www.seedandspark.com/watch/the-bus-trip

I’ve also started working on my next animation short film project. This time it’s going to be a sci-fi saga for kids.

the_bus_trip
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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every single month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 3 times a month. Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

Interview with Animator/Filmmaker Brian Giovanni (WHEN COMES THE RAIN)

 WHEN COMES THE RAIN played to rave reviews at the May 2018 FEEDBACK Film Festival in Los Angeles.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Brian Giovanni: I was taking an online animation class taught by Bill Plympton. The assignment was to produce a short film throughout the class, and this is the film I had created. As for motivational factors, getting the film made and completed in time for the class deadlines was certainly a factor, but the larger appeal was simply having the chance to work with Bill and getting his creative input and guidance along the way. I’ve been a huge fan and admirer of his work for years, so the opportunity to do this project and see it through to completion was especially exciting.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

The class itself was 2 months, and then I spent another month fine tuning some extra details to get it festival-ready.. So in total 3 months.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

‘Misplaced Ambition’ seems appropriate.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

For my animation projects, I typically do most, if not all of the work on my own. In this particular film, I did it all (story, animatics, full animation, music, editing, sound, VFX, etc..). Being a one-man-show has its challenges, and it’s certainly time-consuming, since you’re carrying all of that workload by yourself. But at the end of the day, it does have its advantages. Being responsible for every aspect of what the audience is seeing and hearing on screen – it can be quite empowering as well.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

It was fun seeing the various impressions people received, and the artistic details that resonated with them. You never know how someone might interpret your work, and allowing others to see it in their own way and share that impression back with you can be quite insightful. Also, getting out of ‘isolated creation mode’ and into the world of actually sharing it with other people is always a welcome treat.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video of the Short Film:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

One of my on-going animation outlets is submitting to LoopdeLoop – an Australian-based animation collective that hosts bi-monthly festivals of looping animations / GIFs, set to a given theme. They have screening cities all over the world (even here in LA!) and the loops can range from a few seconds to a few minutes, from narrative to experimental. One such theme a few years back was ‘Ritual’ and I immediately had this idea of birds doing a ritualistic rain dance to fill a birdbath. Later on, the idea became too extensive to complete in time, so I tabled it, and went with another idea instead. Then when the class with Bill Plympton came about, I brought it back, and it became the perfect fit for this assignment.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably a two-way tie between Tim Burton’s ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure’ and Warren Beatty’s ‘Dick Tracy’ – two childhood staples that I watched endlessly in my youth. Today, I could probably still watch them over and over…

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s great! The process is incredibly streamlined to not only submit your film to a wide collection of festivals at one time, but it also helps in the overall research process. Looking for the right kind of festivals for one particular film can be fairly time consuming. Their platform makes it easy to find the right kind of setting or audience that you’re looking for.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Probably ‘Mack the Knife’ by Bobby Darin. It’s become my go-to song for karaoke!

10. What is next for you? A new film?

Yes, there’s always a new film on the horizon! Giving ‘When Comes the Rain’ a pretty decent festival run seems to be turning into its own full-time job these days, but I have three other short films in various stages of production at the moment. Never short on things to do!

 when_comes_the_rain

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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every single month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 3 times a month. Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

Interview with Animator/Filmmaker Susan Shulman (PURRS AND ‘OL MAN BLUES)

 PURRS AND ‘OL MAN BLUES was the winner of BEST MUSIC at the December 2017 Animation FEEDBACK Film Festival.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Susan Painter: I have a love of music especially the blues and it was inspired by the actual musician Jack Dappa from New York City. I heard his song and it inspired me.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

3 months of crazy drawing and experimentation.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Blues Soul

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

Not having enough technical expertise.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I was delighted and thought what they said had merit. It was really great feedback. As artists we need that feedback to continue in our dreams. It’s very important.

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

Again, its my love of music that was the impetus for this concept. Of course I do love cats too!

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

That’s a tough answer but I think what has influenced me in the past was the classic Disney movies like Fantasia and the old black and white felix the cat.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I love it. It makes my life easier in submitting!

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Too many to name but for sure Muddy Waters, I got my mojo working.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I just completed a new one called In Our Memories Forever. I hope to submit it to you again this year. It is 2.5 minutes long, I can’t seem to stick to 1 minute. It is about heritage and immigration to Canada in 1900 by boat. I hope you will like it.

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PURRS AND ‘OL MAN BLUES, 2min., Canada, Animation
Directed by Susan ShulmanCool alley cat meets old blues musician and they tour together

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!