My parents love telling me about how when they were kids, movies only cost a nickel. And you wouldn’t just get to watch one major film but there’d be all sorts of news clips, weekly adventure serials and even some shorts beforehand.
Somewhere along the line, shorts have made a comeback. Thanks, Disney! There are familiar characters (like Mike and Sully from Monsters University or the upcoming Frozen Fever), but more recently, Disney has started running original shorts before it’s feature films.
Patrick Osborne served as head of animation for the beautiful and heartwarming short Paperman, which won an Oscar for Best Animated Short. He also took on the role of co-head of animation for the recent smash hit Big Hero 6. But in terms off… ahem… “pet” projects, Osborne assumed the mantle of Director for Walt Disney Animation Studios’ most recent short, Feast.
An adorable tale of romance is told without any dialogue (just like Paperman), but instead through the eyes of an adorable (and hungry!) puppy named Winston. This dog can eat and loves eating people food. You can follow the trajectory of this onscreen romance through the very meals the couple eats… and drops to the anticipating pooch on the floor.
During my recent trip to L.A. for the insanely awesome blog event we’ve dubbed #McFarlandUSAEvent, myself and two dozen bloggers had the opportunity to attend a Big Hero 6 press event. One of those events centered around Feast, the short shown before Big Hero 6 (and is included on the DVD!).
Osborne took the time to walk us through the entire process from concept to creation. He showed us the unique animation style that was used to bring the beautiful color and style of the short to life. He even revealed that a certain wedding dress in the short was modeled after his own wife’s dress.
The original concept for Feast dates back to a personal project Osborn had worked on where he basically shot images of different dinners he ate every day and rolled it all into one quick movie. That concept of telling a story through food just evolved over time.
Recently Walt Disney Animation Studios introduced a program for pitching shorts. Open to any employees of WDAS, Osborne submitted three pitches and ultimately scored a win with Feast.
I absolutely love the art style on this short, not too detailed but not too cartoony. And the somewhat muted color-scheme works perfectly to set the overall mood. It doesn’t hurt that Winston’s a cute li’l puppy and his expressions alone will have you laughing in your seat.
It’s fantastic that Disney’s supporting its employees with programs like this and letting anyone work on a project of this magnitude. Creativity comes in so many forms, and Disney clearly supports that notion wholeheartedly. If only more companies would follow suit. Just some food for thought.
Catch Feast on the Big Hero 6 Blu-ray/DVD
On Sale February 24, 2015