Massive thanks to Dog and Rabbit who put the night on. It looks like a great lineup and worth going just for Chris Shepherd’s presenting style. There will be a few of us there so come along if you want to say Hi.
Rob is performing his live re-score of King Kong (the original, of course) and Man in a Cat will be screened beforehand as support. How cool is that? If you’re at Bestival this weekend, go and check out the King Kong rescore and get there to watch Man in a Cat too.
Having won the award with Man in a Cat last year, we were very honoured to be asked to judge this year’s London Comedy Film Festival Discovery Short award. And now our shortlist has been released ahead of the screening and awards ceremony on Sunday 27th January at BFI Southbank.
The standard was very high across the board but we had to narrow it down to three. So naturally, we chose four including an honourable mention. Here, in alphabetical order, is the shortlist:
Painkiller (dir. Mustapha Kseibati)
For mining laughs from a very dark situation, whilst maintaining a genuinely touching story at the heart of it all. The acting is superb and the comedy doesn’t detract from the central drama.
Tooty’s Wedding (dir. Frederic Casella)
For creating a fully-formed short film that is funny as it is recognisable. It’s very well scripted and uses great acting to find laughs at every opportunity, building enough pathos to create characters that are both relatable and pitiful.
Womble (dir. Robert Pirouet)
For notching up the tension in a classic comedy premise in an original way. It crams in the laughs, with visual jokes playing off rapid fire lines which are delivered to perfection by the excellent cast.
Honourable mention: PVT Craine (dir. Ben Mallaby)
For its fast paced build up and unexpected twist. It manages to go past the typical sketch format by focusing on the characters’ relationship as much as the laughs.
Louis and I will be at the BFI on the 27th to announce the winner and present the award, so if you’re going to be at LOCO that day, get in touch to say hello. For the full list of films screened at the Showcase and tickets, visit the LOCO website here.
We had a great year in 2012, so we thought it would be a good idea to look back on some of the things that happened for us at Dice Productions but also to look forward and provide a preview of things to come from us this year. Let’s kick things of with the best of 2012 in our world of comedy, film, writing and animation…
Man in a Cat
Our short animated comedy All Consuming Love (Man in a Cat) starring Kevin Eldon, Josie Long and Isabel Fay came into its own this year and did wonders on the festival circuit. It screened at over 40 festivals worldwide, winning prizes and accolades including:
The exciting piece of news of 2012 was that we were commissioned by Channel 4’s Random Acts to make a new short film called Don’t Fear Death for the telly. It’s an animated comedy about the benefits of death. It’s a little twisted. We’re currently preparing and are just confirming our voice talent (which is incredibly exciting), so hopefully we’ll be adding some production notes to the blog soon.
We worked on some great projects with some cool people including:
Anna & Katy – Animated segments for the Channel 4 sketch show for Rough Cut TV.
Oxfam – Directed and animated a short film for Oxfam’s International Women’s Day
First Light Films – Animation and writing on ‘How To’ filmmaking videos with Steve Spencer of Nice Monster.
We also made a couple of things to amuse ourselves including this sketch called Lady Mail Man:
Plans for 2013
2013 is looking set to be an exciting year as production mode for Don’t Fear Death, our first solo TV commission, is already winding up. The film is due to air on Channel 4 later in the year before landing online, so we’ll keep you posted.
We’re judging the London Comedy Film Festival shorts competition in January and sometime after that we’ll be watching Anna & Katy on Channel 4, not just for the small, animated segments we made for it, but because it’s hilarious. We’ve seen the first two episodes and it’s smashing.
As well as working on several new animation projects and hopefully more TV, we’ll be making more short and snappy animations and sketches for our YouTube Channel and our own amusement (something we didn’t do enough of last year).
We’ve also got quite a few scripts up our sleeves too (it’s where we keep them) which we’ll be looking to get either produced or developed this year. We’ve got a sitcom, a live-action short, an animated series or two, and lots of sketches and new ideas to bring to life, so the backlog is certainly very healthy. If you want to talk to us about any or all of them, get in touch!
Finally, we’re on the look-out for representation, so if you’re an agent, or can recommend a good one for writing and/or directing, again, get in touch.
Here’s a very nice and trend affirming quote from him:
Funny and bizarre in equal measure this brilliantly realised animation draws you into its universe surprisingly quickly. It’s really funny, but also surprisingly heartfelt – which is an extraordinary achievement for a film which features so much cat anus. A joy to watch.
After almost exactly a year of festivals, a smattering of awards and a photo with Barry From Eastenders, Man In A Cat has finally popped its head out of the internet! It’s also been released on Future Shorts’ YouTube Channel where it’s gathered some nice comments already.
Now that everybody in the world can see the film, we’d appreciate your help in making every one of them watch it whether they want to or not! Hooray!!
If we were asked of our US gang allegiances it’d be pretty difficult to decide. But luckily we don’t have to choose, as All Consuming Love (Man in a Cat) has been accepted into both DC Shorts in Washington and Hollyshorts in Hollywood! We’re working on a combined Eastside/Westside hand gesture.
So far, Man in a Cat has seemed to go down better on the East Coast having had a few New York festival screenings, so it’s great to be screening in Hollywood again, and not only that, at the famous Chinese Theatre!
I was mainly interested in what they had to say because there is actually some philosophy among all the poo jokes, which is why the film equally gets remarked as “disturbing” and “heartwarming”.
Here’s them chatting about it. Apologies for the Count Crapular filming. I arrived late so filmed surreptitiously from the back of the hall. That’s me calling out at the end like a jilted lover at a wedding. I went on stage and chatted some more about the philosophy behind the film, but stupidly didn’t record the audio.
On stage I was given a quick checkover to make sure no one was in my eye and then I gave my account of things.
One of the starting points for making Man In A Cat into a proper story was actually Plato’s Allegory of the Cave (Yeah, we got Greek on this shit). That idea being that if someone was shackled facing the wall of a cave and had only ever seen the shadows of real things, how would they deal with seeing the real world, and then how would he be received by people who live like he used to. Man In A Cat definitely isn’t as mind bending as that, but by living through the eyes of something else he is living behind a glaze and is going to struggle to adapt otherwise.
Man In A Cat is also a bit of a statement on love. You can be in love without finding a soulmate, every relationship isn’t perfect and often people are drawn to people they’re not compatible with. Yorkie only really gets with Susan because she’s one of his kind and awakens some sympathy in him. They’re purposefully not shown as being happily-ever-after because, as Carla put it, relationships made in traumatic situations don’t last.
So you see, every one of those anus jokes was just mis-direction… They weren’t… Or were they?… No.
Anyway, I enjoyed myself. The atmosphere at the screening was made particularly friendly and curious by the fact that most of the films had at least an element of comedy about them. Which I think was a really clever turn, initially because it feels absurd, but then because you realise that comedy can carry a lot of weight and that’s what makes comedy so special.