January 21, 2016

'Chase The Ball'

Donate here to help get the film completed.

I had a quick chat with the creator, Kyle Logan:

When did you first begin to develop this idea for a short film?
I first began developing Chase The Ball a couple years back. Originally, I imagined Chase The Ball would be a live action short with CGI expressions on the tennis ball but after thinking about the type of films that touched me most when I was a kid, I came to the conclusion that Chase The Ball needed to be done in a classic Don Bluth style; frame by frame animation with stunning painted backgrounds.

It’s movies like The Land Before Time, The Secret Of NIMH, and An American Tale that influenced the deepest part of me to want to write stories.

For the film being 6 minutes in length, that is an incredibly ambitious task. How long do you think it will take to complete and will you be enlisting the help of many fellow artists?

Yes… 6 minutes is very ambitious, especially when doing traditional animation. If we are able to fund on Kickstarter, we would begin production immediately with a production timeline ranging from 6-7 months. Our main goal would be to finish the film for submission to the Sundance Film Festival, which is in August and September of 2016. Utah is a hub of amazingly talented artists that constantly get pulled away by big studios like Disney and Pixar. We will be using this same pool of artists to make sure Chase The Ball is completed with the highest standards and expectations possible.

Obviously this seems to be a close and personal story of yours, how much would you say is based upon actual events?
This story is actually based on a true story, believe it or not. When I was very young (6 years old) our family dog passed away, who happened to be a golden retriever named Lindsey. We buried Lindsey in the back yard and according to my dad, I stood next to the grave and asked him if I could go with Lindsey too. I know! Kind of a creepy thing for a 6 year old to say and it probably freaked my parents out but this story is what inspired me to write Chase The Ball. As a writer, I like to tell stories from unique perspectives and it seemed interesting to put my experience in an object that means something more to a dog than it does to us.

You mention that it will be classically animated to keep that traditional animated cartoon look and feel. What software will you use to animate and paint your characters and backgrounds?
Although we would love to employ the same pipeline that Don Bluth used back in the 80’s in Ireland, its just not logistically or financially possible these days. However, we will try and emulate that same style using great animation software like Toon Boom and Photoshop.

At what point did you realize you had to make this film? What has driven you to make certain this project gets made?
I realized that Chase The Ball had to be made after my wife read the first draft and broke down in tears. It’s this emotional reaction, something I’ve seen happen many times with many different people, that drives me to make sure this film gets made, even if we don’t meet our goal on Kickstarter. I believe in telling stories that touch people at the core and are able to bring out sensitive feelings that they might not even know they’re harboring.

Do you have your crew and a schedule produced and ready to go?
We have most of our crew ready to go, which includes a great animation director by the name of Ian Johnson who co-founded TML studios 8 years ago. We also have several concept and story board artists and two out of the five animators we will need to finish the film. Once funded, we will bring on the remaining members of the team immediately so there is no lag in production.

Are your plans to release it to the many animation film festivals screening across the world?
Yes! We are planning to submit Chase The Ball to all types of film festivals, starting with Sundance. It’s our goal to show this story to the world!

Do you have any plans for after this film is complete and shipped out?
As any writer, artist, or film maker would tell you, we are always looking ahead at our next project. To stay consistent with my goal of creating emotionally powerful stories that move people with non-traditional endings, my next project will follow a young Mexican boy who fails to find and ultimately know his “willingly” absent father and in turn becomes hardened with bitter resentment.

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