The Creator’s Project (Vid): The Making Of ERNEST & CELESTINE
When Benjamin was here for The Oscars®(heck, each time he came to LA) he was flooded with requests for interviews.
This interview (see video in the link below) by The Creator’s Project was particularly interesting, as I sat on the floor behind the cameraman, Ben (as always) handled it like a pro.
The only errors I notice is they credited “Vincent” for the tumblr drawings as they were discussing the late Gabrielle Vincent, the cut in the animation causing a glitch in the animation, and a misspelling of the the incredible composer’s name: Vincent Courtois.
Those charming (& hysterically funny) tumblr drawings which were referenced in the video are all Benjamin’s.
Other amazing tidbits worthy of mention (which are not included in the interview) is that (*for the majority of the film), Benjamin’s team consisted of only 5 animators & 3 BG painters.
YES, 5 animators did almost all of the animation and clean up themselves – and at the height of production, there were approximately 15.
(For those of us who have worked in the LA studios, that is unheard of – our teams have consisted of about 50 – 80 animators and 80 – 100 clean up artists.)
Ben’s background team consisted of 3 painters for over 500 backgrounds – and when the production was in full swing, approximately 10.
The budget was only 9.6 mil euro / 12 mil US and the film took approximately 4.5 years (from the time Ben started) to complete.
Ben’s AMAZING co-directors (Vincent Patar & Stephane Aubier – who also co-directed A TOWN CALLED PANIC) were on the film for 2 years, helping Ben with the narration of the film (and Ben was responsible for all of the art & artistic direction). In Europe filmmakers must finalize the animatic before moving further into production.
Ben took the boards and locked the animatic in FLASH in 18 months – with the timing, pacing, staging and acting choices so precise that the animators were able to go into the files and flush out the animation in 16 short months.
The animation was done traditionally in FLASH and the backgrounds are watercolor on paper.
It is a co-production with France, Belgium and Luxembourg.
The French producer is the great Didier Brunner (who also produced THE LADY AND THE PIGEONS, KIRIKOU & SORCERESS, TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE and THE SECRET OF KELLS), who used to read the ERNEST & CELESTINE books to his daughter, Pauline, when she was a child – and it is she who is the voice of our beloved Celestine.
See more about the “Making of” ERNEST & CELESTINE from this great video interview by The Creator’s Project:
And, of course, learn more about the film from each chapter of Ben’s HYSTERICAL “Making of” ERNEST & CELESTINE Tumblr – start from the beginning…