Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Happy About My Depression

Last year, theater multi hyphenate and wonderful human being Elizabeth Swados called on WM Animation to help with a special project.  Ms. Swados, who had a Broadway and international hit show Runaways, is also a writer and wrote an illustrated humorous book depicting her experiences suffering with depression.  Having a lot of success with the book, Ms. Swados decided to try and turn it into an animated short film and came to us for help.  We were asked to create a one minute sizzle (as they say in the biz) to generate interest and show how Liz's crude yet whimsicaldrawing style could be modified while keeping the flavor of the original pen and ink drawings.
    Keeping a very loose drawing style using Flash and using minimal color we animated a one minute piece that introduces the main character and the premise of the film with wonderful narration by Sigourney Weaver.  Happily, the film has found most of its needed funding and we are now in the midst of the writing the screenplay in conjunction with Ms. Swados.  Executive Producing the film is Roz Lichter and Producer is Joshua Hetzler.  Music for the sizzle composed and performed by David Nelson.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

W/M Animation crafts a game for Kraft

In an effort to bring more exposure to their snack Ritz Crackerfuls, Kraft foods launched a facebook game created by W/M Animation and produced through Acme Filmworks.  The game is a first-person scenario where the user plays as the main character who is experiencing hunger at work and gets to make decisions and follow different paths for the character to take resulting in an array of various endings.  The game and entire Ritz campaign was conceived by Euro RSCG Worldwide and took a lot of figuring out to keep track of the scenario segments and ensure the continuity is maintained so that the different paths transition smoothly.
We wanted to try and bring some familiarity and reality to the spot so while the characters were created in and animated in flash, the backgrounds were done with a more photo-realistic feel and the office environment was built in After Effects to give the characters a "3D" environment to walk through to enhance the illusion of the user AS the character. 
The game hopes to connect with adults 25 - 54 who may often find themselves at their desk waiting for their lunch breaks and hoping to have a snack they can munch on till then.  While deciding what to eat, why not try out the game on facebook?
      Here is a recent NY Times article about the project.
Kraft Tries Again With a Ritz Snack, Aiming Younger
Thanks to our crew and all the people at Euro RSCG for seeking us out to work on this project.
Special thanks to Pernille D'Avolio who did a great job of producing this for Acme. 

     For W/M Animation:

Produced and Directed by:  Robert Marianetti, David Wachtenheim
Characters Designed by:  David Wachtenheim
Animation by:  Sean Lattrell, Dan Madia, Steve Mead, Frank Summers, Mike Wetterhahn, David Wachtenheim
After Effects:  Dale Clowdis
Backgrounds: Kevin Lacroix, Robert Marianetti

     For Acme Filmworks:

Produced by: Pernille D'Avolio
Animatic Editing by:  George Khair

     For Euro RSCG Worldwide:

Producer:  Miriam Herzfeld
Executive Creative Directors:  Israel Garber, Steve Kashtan
Writer: Will Thomsen
Art Director: Andrew Di Peri, Patrick Jones