HARRY AND MABEL: A LOVE STORY, 4min,. Ireland
Directed by Adam Kemp
Using a recorded conversation and combining 2D animation with stop motion, this film tells a simple, yet engaging story of Mabel and Harry Caroll recalling their younger days in Dublin.
Get to know the filmmaker:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
The project was influenced by Aardman animations (Wallace & Gromit), particularly some of their earlier films where they use recorded, unscripted conversations. I thought it was very mesmerising to hear real life stories told and visualized through animation. So I decided to have a go it myself and asked my grandparents if they would like to be in this film. I think they enjoyed reminiscing.
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
Production on the final film took about two years. I did everything by myself from designing and building the characters and backgrounds to animating everything and everyone one frame at a time, plus checking each shot for any necessary fixes and changes. Even the stop motion segments needed a re-shoot sometimes. All while doing other small projects inbetween.
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
Absolutely everything was a challenge and a new learning experience. In order to find the right balance between realism and imagination, I had to gather as much reference and information as I possibly could on Dublin in the 40s, from how the city looked to how people behaved and socialised back then. Unlike scripts, conversations can't be altered or changed, which means working specifically with what was said and its tone. So I had to think very creativity to illustrate my grandparent's story in a way that's relaxing, yet always engaging .
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
I was absolutely thrilled with what everyone said. I'm so glad they appreciated the hard work put into the film, especially with how they noticed the use 2d for past tense and stop motion for the present. They understood everything that was happening and felt happy for the characters. I'm really proud that I made everything clear and everyone feel good after watching.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
In my mid teens, when I saw Spirited Away. Since then, I became hooked on seeing more compelling and unique animated films like that. I collected indepent feature films and short films by animators from around the world. I didn't get into animation college at first, but I remained determined to get an actual education, as there was nothing I wanted more than to be an animator and create something beautiful. So I spent years improving my art skills until I got accepted into a college that encouraged experimental animation and I had a great time learning there.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
Spirited Away. It was my biggest inspiration to go into animation.
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
Getting actual feedback is certainly a great idea, I think more festivals should do that. I think when promoting festivals and showing what selected films are playing, each film's bio/descriptions should include links to each director's blog and/or social media in the program.
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
Filmfreeway has been a great way of submitting my film. It was easy and convenient to use, the description and rules for the festival were easily accessible and clear.
10. What is your favorite meal?
11. What is next for you? A new film?
At the moment, I'm producing artwork of animals and landscapes using soft pastels. After creating 2D and stop motion animation, I think I'm going to have a go at 3D computer animation.