Slow Cooking

The animatic is where storyboards are edited together to make a rough draft of the film, costing only pencil, paper— and patience to wait for the story to materialize. Over a period of ten years, Kirby drew and redrew the entire movie, having friends and family help with the voices. Slowly things started to take shape…


The Auction

“The beginning of the film was actually the last sequences I put together. The purpose was two fold; to set up the world (farming culture, non-talking animals in contrast to talking thoriphants) and to set up Mosley’s initial trauma that will inform the rest of the movie. The first image is of a HAND. Hands are power to manipulate the world. As the auction reaches a fevered pitch, we lose all human faces and go to a surreal place where many hands reach from outside the frame, leading Mosley away from his mother.”


Questioning Bera

“This was a fun scene and plays a bit more intense in the boards than in the final film. The transition into the sequence was important so I included it here. I was interested in shadows and silhouettes, Simon the farmer looming large, Rue cowering under his mother, the pelting rain, the shadow of the door closing on the thoriphants’ stunned expressions, whispers afterwards in the dark.” Scratch music is from Jonney Greenwood’s “There Will Be Blood.”

The Town of Enoch

“A fun sequence with quite a bit of comedy and a great performance by John Phillips as Bemus. Part of the fun cinematically was creating the bustling squaller of Enoch, with lots of extreme lighting and darker silhouettes wiping the foreground. Hopefully the impression is that there is a lot sin happening in this dodgy little town.” Scratch music is from John Michael Talbot.

Chase at the Waterfalls

“Crazy action here. Lots of rack focusing, vague foreground elements (taking cues from George Roy Hill) and swinging cameras. The action serves a purpose though, to underscore the idea that things might have gone differently if Mosley had hands. The culmination of the sequence is Mosley’s front foot pawing at a tree that might have saved him— if only he could have grasped it.” Scratch music from John Williams’ Harry Potter score.