‘Toy Story’ gets a live-action, shot-for-shot treatment that was made to impress

Posted in Entertainment,Movies,Video by Scott Meisner on January 15th, 2013

You know that saying? If you put your mind to it you can accomplish anything. Well, here’s proof. Jesse Perrotta, 21, and Jonason Pauley, 19, created a live-action, shot-for-shot remake of the original Toy Story. After two years of hard work with real toys, marionette strings and wires and stop-motion skill, the boys uploaded to YouTube an 80 minute recreation of the classic Pixar animated film. To add authenticity they incorporated Randy Newman’s unforgettable soundtrack and they edited in the characters’ real voices from the movie.

If you don’t have an hour and twenty minutes to take it all in, you can still appreciate their inspired effort by scrubbing around the clip that has amassed over 3.6 million views since hitting the ‘Net just three days ago. The Toy Story junkies brought a DVD copy of their movie to Pixar and although the company hasn’t offered any official comments, Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich tweeted a link to the video and called the creators “VERY dedicated guys.”

Take a trip down memory lane and watch in awe as Toy Story comes to (real) life.

Trailer round-up: ‘Despicable Me 2′, ‘Frankenweenie’, ‘ParaNorman’, ‘Prometheus’ [Update: 'MIB 3']

Posted in Movies,News,Video by Scott Meisner on March 3rd, 2012

The Minions are back in Illumination Entertainment’s sequel Despicable Me 2. Check out the teasiest of teasers above and anticipate the film’s July 3, 2013 future release.

Now jump after the break to watch trailers for Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie, ParaNorman, and Prometheus. (Click here for more…)

Short film: ‘Address Is Approximate’ (using stop-motion & Google Street View)

Posted in Short film,Video by Scott Meisner on December 4th, 2011

A lonely desk toy longs for escape from the dark confines of the office, so he takes a cross country road trip to the Pacific Coast in the only way he can – using a toy car and Google Maps Street View.

Address Is Approximate is produced by director Tom Jenkins of London-based commercial production company The Theory. The stop-motion animation short, shot with a Canon 5D Mark II, quickly went viral and has garnered over 1.8 million views in fifteen days. The story it tells is so simple yet unbelievably captivating. And the idea of taking inanimate objects for a “drive” cross country in front of a computer monitor using Google Maps is utterly ingenious. In case you’re wondering, the soothing track that plays throughout is “Arrival of the Birds” by The Cinematic Orchestra.

The clip was a pet project for Jenkins who was recently signed to the talent agency WME with his partner Simon Sharp. Hopefully this means that we can expect more from Jenkins in the future, perhaps on the feature side of things.

[Via Deadline; Vimeo]

YouTube musician Kina Grannis has fun with jelly beans in new stop-motion music video

Posted in Music,Video by Scott Meisner on November 6th, 2011

Have you ever heard of jelly bean art? Well it exists. And now so does a jelly bean music video. YouTube star Kina Grannis wrote a song called “In Your Arms” and developed a music video with director Greg Jardin involving 288,000 jelly beans. The insanely impressive stop-motion video, which includes a total of 2,460 individual frames, took 22 months (1,357 hours) to complete. Sure the song is catchy and Grannis has an infectious charm about her, but it’s the sheer level of dedication put into this music video that has elevated to viral status. In under a week it has amassed about 1.5 million well deserved views. After you wipe the saliva off your mouth when the video ends (and that’s either because you’re so impressed or you’re craving Jelly Belly jelly beans, or both) make sure you jump after the break to watch a seven minute making-of video that shows just how much hard work and patience was required to make the music video a reality. With “In Your Arms” Grannis has proved she’s a creative force to be reckoned with, and I cannot wait to see what she comes up with next. (Click here for more…)

Stop-motion animation studio LAIKA is back with ‘ParaNorman’ [trailer inside]

Posted in Image cache,Movies,News,Video by Scott Meisner on October 31st, 2011

Here’s a nice Halloween treat for us all: a teaser poster and trailer for the upcoming stop-motion animated feature ParaNorman. The movie is from Focus Features and LAIKA, the same partnership that produced 2009′s critically-acclaimed Coraline. ParaNorman is directed by Sam Fell and Chris Butler; Butler imagined and penned the original story. The voice cast includes Kodi Smit-McPhee, Casey Affleck, Anna Kendrick, John Goodman, Leslie Mann, Jeff Garlin, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Elaine Strich, Tempestt Bledsoe, Bernard Hill, and Alex Borstein. The trailer, embedded after the break, doesn’t reveal much of the plot as it includes zero dialogue, but this quick synopsis should suffice:

A misunderstood boy who can speak with the dead takes on ghosts, zombies and, worst of all, grown-ups, in order to save his town from a centuries-old curse. Norman Babcock is an outcast in his small New England town. When a horde of zombies is unleashed on the populace, Norman learns he must use his paranormal powers to make things right again. That’s not an easy task when you’re only eleven. And you’ve just been grounded. 

The movie poster and teaser trailer make ParaNorman out to be a strange, dark, and visually stunning piece of work worthy of much anticipation. It releases wide August 17, 2012 in 3D. (Click here for more…)

‘Gulp’, the world’s largest stop motion video shot with the Nokia N8

Posted in Design,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on September 5th, 2011

The creative minds at Sumo Science at Aardman have constructed a short film called Gulp, the world’s largest stop motion video. It was shot using the Nokia N8 smartphone which features a 12 megapixel camera and Carl Zeiss optics. A very tall crane was also used to help shoot the various scenes; the largest scene stretches over 11,000 square feet! It was done on location at Pendine Beach in South Wales. It only makes sense that the same group behind the world record-breaking ‘largest stop-motion animation set’ is also behind the construction of the world’s smallest stop motion video which can be seen here. Nokia’s phones might not have been all the rage in the States, but you cannot deny the delicate precision of the cameras built inside them. Jump after the break to go behind-the-scenes of the impressive Gulp.

[Via Gizmodo] (Click here for more…)

Music video: Coldplay – “Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall”

Posted in Music,Video by Scott Meisner on June 29th, 2011

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin stars in this fast-paced, colorful and vibrant music video for their new single ”Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall.” The stop-motion technique is used wonderfully here.

More like, every teardrop is a waterfall… of paint!

In related Coldplay news, the band just released a 3-track EP that shares the same name as the single. Get it here.

Still waiting for your iPad 2 to arrive?

Posted in Design,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on March 31st, 2011

Enjoy this stop motion-enhanced Plasticine model in action!

[Via Gizmodo]

This post is packed with TRON goodies including a music video, headphones, and a hotel room [Update: NSFW Playboy photoshoot]

Posted in Images,Movies,Music,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on December 10th, 2010

(1) Medicom Toy is celebrating the collaboration between Tron: Legacy and legendary electric duo Daft Punk by producing the masked musicians in Kubrick and RAH (Real Action Hero) form.  They will release in late December as part of the Series 21 BE@RBRICK assortment ($4.99).  The 400% BE@RBRICK ($199.99) and KUBRICK ($19.99) two-packs will release in mid-January.  The RAH figures are expected to come out in April at $229.99 each.  All the Daft Punk-inspired toys will feature the same outfits and helmets the duo wears in the cameo they make in the film.

Look after the break for so much more Tron content. (Click here for more…)

Preview Community’s upcoming stop motion animated Christmas episode

Posted in Images,Television,Video by Scott Meisner on November 24th, 2010

Community series creator Dan Harmon spilled the beans that this season’s Christmas episode is going to be “wall-to-wall stop motion animat[ed]” back in late September.  And here’s proof that the man was not lying!  In the episode preview above you can clearly see that the entire Greendale gang has received the Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer treatment just in time for the Christmas special.  According to Harmon the episode will deal with “Abed’s search for the meaning of Christmas.”  The episode “looks into what makes him different from other people.”  He says, “Everything that happens on this episode is part of the actual show and will change the characters, and yet there are wonderful, fantastic holiday things happening in it.”  Can’t wait!  Thus far Community‘s holiday episodes have been the most memorable; there’s no denying that “Epidemiology” (the Halloween zombie episode) kicked major ass.  The stop motion Christmas ep will surely impress.  Speaking of which… be sure to look in the gallery below to get a closer look at Shirley, Jeff, Britta, Abed, and the rest of the gang in animated form.  Senior student Chang is an Asian snowman!

Community airs Thursday nights at 8PM on NBC.  “Abed’s Uncontrollable Christmas” is penned in for a 12/9 air date.

Update: Head over to EW if you want to see some more Community stop motion goodness.  In addition to some sneak peeks you’ll also find a couple behind-the-scenes videos that show how much effort goes into making a claymation special.  It’s intensive work!

[Via EW; Facebook]

Tiny walk sign dude comes to life in this light stencil animation

Posted in Design,photography,Video by Scott Meisner on November 13th, 2010

If you liked iPad light painting you will love this light stencil animation.  ”Subcarpati”, produced by Ionut Negrila and Mihai Calota, features an animated version of the walk sign man.  But you want to know how it was made.  The producers share that it took 5,313 pictures of 57 stencils, 3 different light sources, many calculations, measurements, and camera settings adjustments to make it happen.  They hope their video inspires the creatives of our world to push limits and produce some captivating work.  Look after the break to watch a brief behind-the-scenes look at the sheer amount of work that was required to make a stop motion video of this magnitude.

[Via Vimeo; Gizmodo] (Click here for more…)

OK Go’s latest music video stars 2,430 pieces of toast

Posted in Design,Music,Video by Scott Meisner on November 13th, 2010

By now you should know that when it comes to making music videos, rock band OK Go never holds back.  From datamashing to Rube Goldberg-ing to training 12 dogs and a goat, OK Go knows how to wildly impress its fans by representing their music with imaginative and awe-inspiring visuals.  For their next experiment video, the band used–drum roll, please–toast.  But it’s not that simple!  Using a Samsung NX100 micro four-thirds camera they took pictures of 2,430 pieces of toast (or 215 loaves of bread) and effectively used the process of laser-etching and stop motion to tell a story.  They took 15 still shots for every second of video.  The animation stages must’ve been painstakingly difficult to produce, and yet there’s something quite beautiful about all of it and this helps direct your mind to the final aesthetic instead of towards the blood and sweat put into it.  As always, a nod of gratitude is due here.  These guys can do it all.

[Via OK Go website, Twitter, YouTube]

This music video was made with 700,000 Lite-Brite pegs in stop motion

Posted in Design,Music,Video by Scott Meisner on October 27th, 2010

Never heard of David Crowder Band?  That’s fine because the most interesting part of their new music video “SMS (Shine)” are the visuals.

The video portraying a love story made completely of LITE-BRITE pegs was done solely by hand. Even details such as the piano playing in the background and the monkeys beating a drum in perfect time was done free of digital affects and computer animation. It took 2,150 man hours, 1,200 LITE-BRITE images, 83 friends and 148 pizzas to complete the video.

Yeah.  Enjoy!

[Via Engadget]

Spinning lights atop a vinyl record player groove along with the Tron theme

Posted in Design,DIY,Music,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on September 23rd, 2010

In this time-lapse stop motion video, one Kim Pimmel managed to control a series of lights spinning on top of a vinyl record player to the fast-paced electro beat of the new Tron: Legacy theme.  Pimmel explains:

The video is stop motion, so every frame is an individually shot photograph. Each photograph is a long exposure photo, with exposures reaching up to 20 seconds in some cases.  To control the lights, I used an Arduino controlled via bluetooth to drive a stepper motor. The stepper motor controls the movements of the lights remotely from Processing [computer software].  The light sources include cold cathode case lights, EL wire, lasers and more.

Daft Punk would be proud.

[Via Gizmodo; Vimeo]

Teeny tiny Dot stars in the world’s smallest stop motion video

Posted in Design,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on September 23rd, 2010

UK-based animators Aardman were recently entered into the Guinness Book of Records for creating the world’s smallest stop motion video.  Dot, a tiny 0.35 inch model figurine, struggles through a microscopic world made of fabric in this fun one minute thirty-seven second short film.  The video was shot using a Nokia N8, a smartphone that boasts a 12 megapixel camera and Carl Zeiss optics, attached to a CellScope microscope.  Yeah, this is technically a viral marketing stint by Nokia, but that does not take away the sheer magnitude of awesomeness surrounding this record-worthy feat.  Peek after the break to watch a making-of video.

[Via Gizmodo; TechRadar] (Click here for more…)

Community is going animated for the Christmas special [Update: "Twittersode" to precede the premiere]

Posted in News,Television by Scott Meisner on September 21st, 2010

Series creator Dan Harmon is ready to take Community to a whole ‘nother level, quite literally in fact.  Season 2′s Chistmas episode is going to be entirely stop motion animated, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer-style.  Earlier this summer Harmon shared his excitement over the possibily of making such a unique episode.  “It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do but, I never anticipated having the ability to do it,” he told NYMag.  “Jeff Gaspin at NBC woke up one morning and thought Community should do an animated episode.  I was like, ‘Well, that’s weird, because that’s the kind of stuff I’m usually suggesting and guys like him veto.”

Upon hearing news of the holiday surprise, a number of the cast members also couldn’t contain their enthusiasm for it.  “It is so hard for me not to tell everybody I know about it,” says Danny Pudi (Abed). “The minute we read that script, I was over-the-moon excited.  It’s like that Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer special that you see every Christmas. But in true Community fashion, it’s also a little subversive and a little dark.”  Alison Brie (Annie) said, “When I found out, I fell in love with the show all over again!”  Star Joel McHale (Jeff) revealed, “I can confirm that we are not yellow [ie. The Simpsons], and we do not have a talking dog [ie. Family Guy] in the episode.  But all your favorite Greendalians will be going animated.”

Can you imagine an animated Senor Chang and Starburns?  It’s going to be great.  In related news, you should know that Community also has planned a top-secret, big budget Halloween special featuring–you guessed it–zombies!  “Knowing too much about this particular plot would ruin it, but I promise it’s an awesome, one-off crazy conceptual episode with plot points and effects that are more familiar to horror film fans than our show’s fans,” says Harmon.

Community returns Thursday (9/23) at 8PM on NBC.

Update: Starting at 7PM ET (one hour prior to the season premiere) the main characters of the show will communicate with one another in a conversation using Twitter.  This “Twittersode” is being described as a “prequel” scene to the premiere ep.  According to EW,  ”they’ll make arrangements for their first meet-up of the year, as well as preparations for their first class, Anthropology 101.”  A class we all know will be led by the one and only Betty White.  You have two options to watch the prequel convo go down: (1) Head over to www.nbc.com/CommunityTwittersode or (2) follow the Community gang on Twitter and watch it happen live in your Twitter feed.  Hop after the break to find all the characters’ Twitter handles.  (Mind you these are Twitter accounts for the fictional show characters, not the actual actors’ Twitter names.)  Happy tweeting!

[Via EW, here, here & here] (Click here for more…)

Light painting with an iPad creates awesome 3D visuals in space

Posted in Design,Technology,Video by Scott Meisner on September 17th, 2010

Light painting meets stop motion in this creative video designed by BERG and Denstsu London.  Using only a camera and multiple iPads, the team was able to capture illuminated 3D typography in real space.  I could blab about how they used multiple long exposures to create the awesome effect, but you should really just watch the video embedded above to see the final product and learn exactly how it was done.

[Via Engadget]

Human Pac-Man in stop motion makes me happy

Posted in EXPERIENCE,Video by Scott Meisner on September 13th, 2010

111 human bodies over the course of four hours reenacted a game of Pac-Man moving around from seat to seat inside an auditorium.  Watch it because it will make you happy.  If the home-brewed sound effects don’t make you giggle like a little kid, there is something seriously wrong with you.  Now smash play!

Note: This video is one of five performance of the GAME OVER Project from the French-Swiss artist Guillaume Reymond.  Head over to the NotSoNoisy YouTube channel to watch more video game-inspired stop motion masterpieces.  Human Tetris, Space Invaders, and Pong await.

[Via likecool]

It’s a (stop-motion) battle to the death

Posted in Video by Scott Meisner on September 5th, 2010

Aardman Studios, the animation studio behind Wallace & Gromit, have harnessed their impressive stop-motion skills to create a battle to the death between a walkman and hoover.  Watch the fun little animated video above to see who wins.

[Via @kpereira]

Look at architecture through a different lens

Posted in Architecture,photography,Video by Scott Meisner on August 6th, 2010

Scintillation, by Xavier Chassaing.

Combining 35,000 photographs, stop-motion, and live projection mapping techniques, Chassaing takes us on a semi-trippy adventure through architecture and nature.

[Via Motionographer]