Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Meet....the line producer, Vanessa Sinden

“I don’t think you can plan or even study to get into Production. If you have the skills, passion and drive for the behind the scenes stuff, I think you just fall into it.”

In her previous life (before she was bit by the film bug, that is) Vanessa studied and worked in Marketing. Her passion for working in film began when she landed a few acting roles in commercials. Being on set opened her eyes to the workings behind the scenes and she instantly knew that this would be her “next big thing”. Vanessa started at the bottom but quickly worked her way up into Production on both commercials and features. Together with Wayne Thornley and Reyer Meihuizen, Vanessa started The Crucial Project with a vision to produce quality, family-orientated films. The Crucial Project’s animated short of a CG series, Hyde’s Angel was presented to sales agents and distributors at Annecy in 2006.

Vanessa has always loved animation and, as a child, can remember starting many a day with a bowl of coco pops while watching Grootbek. Some of her favourite animations include Surf's Up, Kung Fu Panda and Coraline. The animation character she most identifies with? “Sometimes I feel a bit like Wall-e, feeling like life is mostly lots of hard work and faithfulness, but then there is that sweet moment, or season, when everything pales in comparison.” Pin It

Monday, December 21, 2009

Does my beak look big in this?

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Looking back on 2009

In the lastest issue of The Callsheet, Triggerfish reviews another year in the animation industry. Read the full article here. Pin It

All I want for Xmas is....

We had a giftXchange day at the studio and as you can see from the photos, some got luckier than others!

The way it worked was that we each had to get a present for R50 and then put it in the pile. Everyone drew a random number and number 1 took a present first, 2 second etc. But the twist was that number 2 could take 1's present in exchange, and number 46 could choose from any of the other numbers below. So the later numbers had the best choice.

After much swopping most people got what they wanted but it was definitely the SpongeBob Squarepants Satchel and Southern Comfort that were the big hits!

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Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Like father, like son

The casting process for Zambezia is in full swing. Last week Wayne(Director) and Anthony (Head of Story) were in Johannesburg to meet with the Casting Director, Christa Schamberger and to audition potential voice actors.

Coincidentally, Christa was also hired by Anthony’s father Michael Hammon (an award winning cinematographer and film-maker who now lives in Germany) on one of his early films, "Wheels and Deals". Pin It

Monday, December 7, 2009

Team-building can be a minefield

"He was running with his friend from town to town before he was captured. His friend was faster and knew a shortcut through the fields he could take. He said he would come and rescue him and ran a few lengths ahead,like a wild rabbit across the grass,he turned his head, looked back once, and his body was scattered across the field. Dare to try and escape the Triggerfish minefield at 13h30 today or die trying!"

This ominous note that appeared on everyone's desks Friday morning turned out to be a great team-building exercise that Cathy organised for the Triggerfish crew. The activity was designed to build trust between team members, and to show how communication affects the way we work - energizing our computer-eyed animators in the fresh country air didn't hurt either!

Everyone had to pair up and one person from each pair was blindfolded. The unblindfolded person was the captured prisoner and had to guide their escaped partner (blindfolded) through a minefield of "landmines" using verbal instructions only.

Needless to say it was pandemonium with 15 teams battling it out shouting instructions & using code while the escaped prisoners walked ‘blindly’ towards them to the finish line. The winners were Simon & Quentin, largely due to Simon’s booming voice - unfortunately we don’t have a recording so photos will have to suffice.

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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Meet.....the senior animator, Kane Croudace

“I don’t like sacred cows because humour is important to me”.

Kane had to complete a Bachelor of Arts degree followed by a year-long course in digital media before he discovered that he could actually earn a living as an animator. He studied at The Animation School back in the day when it was still the Universal Computer Arts Academy and has been with Triggerfish for the past 2 and half years. A self-proclaimed “Jack-of-all-trades”, he is currently head of layout on our first animated feature but would like to eventually also branch out into story.

As a kid, his favourite animation character was Donald Duck because he always suspected that when you couldn't understand him he was actually swearing and getting away with it. Kane finds his inspiration in music – especially if it’s funny - and enjoys listening to Frank Zappa and Flight of the Conchords. Pin It

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Meet the intern...Langelihle Ntombela (21)

“Great stories inspire me....so do beautiful, striking images.”

Before joining the studio as an intern, Langa studied at The Animation School. As a kid, he was a big fan of Japanese Anime and his passion for drawing sparked his interest in animation in his early teens. Since he got “sucked in” as he puts it, Langa hasn’t looked back. He is still deciding what his area of specialization should be but is leaning towards character animation. One of his favourite characters is Eeyore (from Winnie the Pooh) because he is a bit of an outsider. Pin It

Friday, November 20, 2009

Yo, Mo Bro!

In support of Movember, the bro's at Triggerfish downed their shaving tools and these are the results so far......scary stuff!

Movember is an international, moustache-growing charity event held during November each year that raises funds and awareness for men's health. Movember South Africa will raise funds and awareness for the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA).

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Who said animated characters aren't real?

Some of the Triggerfish crew attended The Animation School's end-of-year party last night. As you can see from the photos they went to a lot of effort to dress up from head to...ahem..toe.
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Monday, November 16, 2009

Meet the intern.... Jovan Janari (22)

The Cape Film Commission and Animation SA, with the financial support of SETA, have joined forces with the aim of creating 10 000 jobs within the animation industry by 2020! The 6-month internship program is part of the first phase of what has become known as the Animation Industry Development Initiative (AIDI).

Meet Jovan, one of 5 interns who have recently joined the Triggerfish team.

“I have always been interested in the strange and the odd."

When 3D first took off Jovan got hooked on animation and in his last year of high school decided to study at The Animation School. He is inspired by the artists Gerrard Brom and Jason Chan, and by the films of director, Guillermo Del Torro. For Jovan, villains are always the coolest characters and he most identifies with Mark Hamill as the Joker. He is currently working on Triggerfish's first feature, Zambezia. "I'm mainly modelling and u.v.-unwrapping - it has been a very rewarding experience so far." Pin It

Friday, November 13, 2009

Hooray for Stop-Frame!

It was great to see the stop-frame shorts made by participants in Animation SA and UNIMA's recent series of animation workshops. The films were screened at last week's animationXchange and will be showcased again at the Unima "Out the Box" festival in March next year.

The aim of the workshops was to help professionals broaden their skills into the world of 3-dimensional animation. Experienced and established animators (including those from Triggerfish) were asked to facilitate and give their input on all aspects from character design to post-production over a period of 6 weeks. Participants teamed up to create a short piece of stop-frame animation and for just 6 sessions with only 2 of them as shoot days, the results were impressive!

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Monday, November 9, 2009

Just another day at the office........

“From the permanent rainbow hanging over the falls caused by the misty spray to the beautiful gorge.... the sights and sounds of Victoria Falls were beautiful and inspiring” – Wayne Thornley

Director Wayne Thornley, along with Mike Buckland (technical producer) and Allan Cameron (production designer) recently took a research trip to Victoria Falls to immerse themselves in the real-life location on which the movie, Zambezia is based.

To capture...ahem...a “bird’s eye” view of the area the team took a helicopter ride around the falls while a sunset cruise allowed them to get up-close and personal with some of the wildlife - including the abundant hippos.

Wayne, Mike and Allan returned to the studio inspired and armed with several new ideas to incorporate into the movie. The technical teams are now pouring over the photographs and videos of bark, rock, leaves and geographical features in the area. That's how amped we are! Pin It

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

IDC inspirations

Triggerfish was recently featured on a TVC showcasing the projects in which the IDC (industrial development corporation) have invested.

IDC inspirations from Triggerfish Animation on Vimeo.

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Monday, November 2, 2009

Khumba promo on the big screen

The promo for Khumba, our second feature set to go into production early next year was screened as part of International Animation Day (IAD) on 28th October at Ster-Kinekor cinema in Cavendish Square.

IAD was launched by the International Animated Film Association (ASIFA) in 2002 to celebrate the art of of animation, commemorating the first public performance of Emile Reynaud's Theatre Optique at the Grevin Museum in Paris, in 1892. The day is celebrated in more than 40 countries and in South Africa, IAD was organised by Touchvision, Toonboom, Animation SA and the Cape Film Commission. Pin It

Another milestone for Zambezia

Drawings by Remi Abrahams

At the end of last week we couldn't help ourselves and celebrated the completion of pre-production on our first feature, Zambezia. But the pre-production wrap party wasn't just an excuse to for a well-deserved Friday afternoon drink! We also wanted to show our appreciation to the team who worked so hard to make sure that we met our deadline:

Lindsay van Blerk (storyboard supervisor) who drew many of the scenes himself and managed the team churning out thousands of drawings and to Allan Cameron (production designer) who set the look and feel of the whole movie with his amazing concept drawings of action scenes. And of course, Big UP to the rest of the storyboard team made up of Iain Bold, Remi "aw shucks" Abrahams, Daniel Clarke, Aibe Elukpo, Michel Smit and editors, Duane Busa and Warren Coetzer.

Now with the entire storyboard and scratch track laid down, it's all systems go! Pin It

Thursday, October 29, 2009

South Africa toons embrace S3D

'Jock,' 'Zambezia' go into production (as published in Variety Oct 27th 2009)

South Africa has two animated feature films in production, both of which are using S3D.

“Jock of the Bushveld,” directed by Duncan MacNeillie, started production in 2007 and is scheduled for a late 2010 release, while “Zambezia,” directed by Wayne Thornley, has only just gone into production for a 2011 release.

Neither project was originally planned to be in S3D. MacNeillie decided to adopt the format after visiting the Annecy animation fest in France in June, about a year after starting production, while “Zambezia” made the shift during pre-production, on the recommendation of its international sales agent, Cinema Management Group.

“Jock” is based on Percy Fitzpatrick’s much-loved 1907 novel about a plucky dog, while “Zambezia” is the story of Kai, an isolated young falcon who leaves his home and father to make a life for himself in the amazing bird city of Zambezia.

Both “Jock” and “Zambezia” have been budgeted to travel internationally. “Zambezia” has already sold to a number of territories worldwide, while MacNeillie said, “‘Jock’ is Africa’s only animal classic and was inspired by Rudyard Kipling, who visited Sir Percy Fitzpatrick in South Africa. We believe the project will appeal to the world market.”

“Khumba,” Triggerfish’s follow-up to “Zambezia,” will also be produced in stereoscopic 3D for its 2012 release, according to director Anthony Silverston.

source: http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118010457.html?categoryid=1236&cs=1 Pin It

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Production begins, Triggerfish expands

Friday 2nd of October marked the official start of production on Zambezia with an Induction Day for the new team. With pre-production drawing to a close, various positions have been filled for the production team as Triggerfish expanded its team in order to tackle the momentous task of producing a full length feature in a year.

Since we announced the call for positions in June, we have had over 550 applicants and it has been a steady process of shortlisting and interviewing potential applicants for each of the positions.

The day started with a brief history of the company and project from partners Stuart, Mike and Anthony, and then a vision for the way forward from Wayne, the director. Vanessa Sinden, line producer of the film and Cathy Bradley, our HR manager rounded off the briefings before the entire team took some time to get to know one another over a braai at our new premises.

Wayne eating some of the cast from Zambezia

Vanessa and Cathy

Over the next few months, the crew will expand even more as the animators and remaining members of the team join the project. This marks the beginning of an exciting new future for the Triggerfish team and we heartily welcome all the new Triggerfishies!

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Exciting time for SA animation

As published in Screen Africa October 2009.

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Monday, October 5, 2009

IDC film shoot

A director and crew from Suburban Films recently spent a day with us at The Barn, shooting an insert for the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).
The aim was to highlight Triggerfish's feature film Zambezia and how the IDC helped to bring it about. Director Akin Omotoso interviewed Triggerfish Exec. Producer Stuart Forrest and Zambezia director Wayne Thornley and shot some fun footage of the animators at work and play.

Watch SABC3 Wednesday 22nd October at 19h57

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Saturday, October 3, 2009

SA Promo Magazine feature

Issue 29 October 2009.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Zambezia Read-throughs

A talented team of local performers came together to read through the script for Zambezia in preparation for the recording of the scratch track which will be used to create a rough animatic of the entire film. The experience of the performers and the spontaneity that the group dynamic brought has already brought new depth and humour to the film and even taken us in some new and surprising directions with characters that came alive through the reading.

Nik Rabinowitz and Zolani Mahola returned after working together with us previously on the Khumba promo. They were joined by director of Nik's shows and actor/comedian in his own right Brent Palmer, as well as established theatre and film actors Tshamano Sebe and Sizwe Msutu. The recordings took place at Media Village in Kalk Bay, and even though characters may be replaced by different performers once a full casting has taken place, they will form the basis of all future performances as well as timing of the animatic.
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