Again I've neglected the animation lessons. I plead overwork. The new film has been an exhausting thrill ride as we are not only designing, modeling, and storyboarding a very fun musical comedy, but actually building one of the smartest pipelines I have ever heard of. This is definitely the right way to make an animated movie. Of course building the road as you are driving 60 miles an hour down it is a big job for all involved, but there is nothing more rewarding than doing something like this right.
I've always wanted to do a musical and I've gotten my wish but as usual in the most out-of-the-box, quirky way possible.
However that is probably the last comment I will make about the film's content until it is finished. Film makers chatting about their projects as they are working on them just strikes me as a bad idea on a lot of levels. Film making is an intense, very expensive, trust based undertaking and the Director (especially but not exclusively) should treat everything he knows, sees, or is said to him as confidential.
Side note: That is true after the film is finished too. Maybe it's my Chicago upbringing, but I strongly feel "family business" should stay in the "family". People make a living doing this and I never want to say anything that could make that harder for someone. This can be difficult when erroneous information/assumptions about who made particular decisions, budgets, script changes, casting, and the like are tossed around publicly after a film comes out. Especially when it's done by people who were involved in the film and clearly know better. But my advice to a young film maker is to shut up and stay shutted up. It's more important that people trust you than the world hears your side of every bit of BS floating around the web.
Look at it this way - I've never been out of work in the last 12 years. I've gotten to write and/or direct the kind of projects I've always wanted to and I make a pretty good living doing something I love. I get to travel all over the world teaching technique and lecturing about the process and craft I am passionate about. If that sounds like a nice life then take my advice and don't try to convince fools and amateurs to agree with you. Smile, wish them well, and get back to doing what the Great Spirit In The Sky put you here to do.
Everyone you're all worked up about will be dead in a hundred years anyway. So will you by the way, so get back to your work!
Anyway I've just been swallowed up by the creative process and it's hard to pull my head out to talk about general theory when I'm so intensely involved in figuring out the precisely correct application of all these theories to specific problems of story telling, design, acting, camera, color, etc. I just don't have enough emotional distance to discuss abstracts right now. When things lighten up, I'll pick it up again.
But we can continue the Directors You Should Know discussion. So new "Director Post" in a few minutes.