WHAT IS THIS FILM ABOUT? HOW IS IT BEING MADE?
Hipposterous is a 2D animated short starring two little kids at the zoo (Jack, a precocious and enthusiastic Caucasian boy, and Lovey, a low key and stubborn African American girl) as they manically chase down a flying hippo.
This is a character-driven, fast-paced chase cartoon in the tradition of Tom & Jerry and Tex Avery’s Droopy, with a lot of personal and modern sensibilities. The purpose is to produce a wide variety of animation for my demo reel. This traditional animation will be a great contrast with my current professional work, which is almost entirely digital, symbol-based productions.
The intended audience for this is children and preteens, with hopefully plenty of crossover appeal. Though I have been lucky in the immediate past to work on several all-ages productions, the vast majority of my career has been spent working on low brow and low budget productions. I want to make sure that I have work that is appropriate to show to any client. I want something that would be appropriate for a wide range of festivals and distribution channels.
The film is currently in production as I advance through my Graduate courses at The Academy of Art University (online), San Francisco, CA. The projected completion date is December 2014. I will be using class time, employing interns, working with my students and student peers, and hassling my friends and professional peers in order to try and meet this, admittedly, difficult deadline.
Here are some of the overall goals for this film:
- Garner attention to my demo reel and production capabilities
- Obtain entrant and recognition on the festival circuit
- Help garner attention to my collaborators, students, and assistants of any kind
- Be a film that can be enjoyed by a wide audience spectrum
This film will begin with no budget, and so aside from some course grades and college credit, all of my assistants and collaborators will be volunteer only. However, it is my goal to start a Kickstarter campaign for this film. Most likely after principle animation is completed (All pencil tests are locked) I will use the pencil test, this website and its contents, as promotional materials to help raise funds.
These funds will be used for three primary purposes:
- Provide some monetary compensation for everyone who aided in its production.
- Create collateral materials (rewards) for donators, and then collateral material for sale after the Kickstarter has ended and the film has been released. These materials would include copies of the film, original artwork, film artwork, toys or figures of the main characters, posters, etc.
- Provide the cash needed to enter the film in a wide array of festivals.
In addition, there is one very important stipulation worth mentioning:
- John Hill will not profit from any donations associated with the production of the film. All funds obtained from Paypal or Kickstarter will be used to fund the film’s production, distribution, and the fulfillment of any agreed upon rewards for funding donations.
- John Hill will only keep profits from the sale of collateral materials and the distribution of paid for (bought, not rewarded) copies of the film after the film has been fully completed, donation funds have been distributed to all collaborators, and the budget for festival distribution has been secured.
This film will be hand drawn, digitally inked and painted, and digitally composited. The software utilized includes: Photoshop, Flash, After Effects, Premiere, ToonBoom Harmony, ToonBoom Animate Pro 2, and TVPaint. I will be trying to not use Flash as much as possible.
Additional software info, such as audio editing, will be edited to this list as it becomes clarified.
If you have additional questions about the film, please feel free to contact me.