The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
Random googling led me across some production art from one Joe Bluhm (http://joebluhm.blogspot.com/). If there’s one thing I love, it’s a professional artist’s sketch blog and happily many digital and animation professionals rock them these days. Joe’s blog revealed a brilliant-looking animated short he contributed designs for called “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr Morris Lessmore” from Moonbot Studios. Here’s the Trailer (http://vimeo.com/17164728). Here’s a description:
“Inspired, in equal measures, by Hurricane Katrina, Buster Keaton, The Wizard of Oz, and a love for books, “Morris Lessmore” is a story of people who devote their lives to books and books who return the favor. The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore is a poignant, humorous allegory about the curative powers of story. Using a variety of techniques (miniatures, computer animation, 2D animation) award winning author/ illustrator William Joyce and Co-director Brandon Oldenburg present a hybrid style of animation that harkens back to silent films and M-G-M Technicolor musicals. “Morris Lessmore” is old fashioned and cutting edge at the same time.”
In other words, hovering dead center in my vortex of awesome.
Moonbot’s got a great series of behind the scenes at their Vimeo page (http://vimeo.com/moonbot) where they speak about inspirations, cherised animation, Katrina and “The power of story to change a life.” After watching the first of these making-ofs it’s clear that “Morris Lessmore” has been created with a deep appreciation for heart-felt storytelling.
I haven’t even seen the film, but over the course of 30 minutes I’d fallen in love.