It’s been a couple of years since I last sculpted a new character. It always takes a bit of time to get my hands to do what my brain tells them to but I’m starting to settle in. Although the scope of this production is scaled back I still need to create 4 new puppets along with some miscellanies close up appendages. And even though one of these characters has only 1 minute of screen time, they all require the same level of detail. The sculpts and moulds should be ready by the fall but it’ll be spring before the actual puppets are camera ready. There’s a whole mess of storyboards to be drawn, armatures to be machined and sets to be built. There’s no shortage of work at the beginning.


My next film was inspired by legendary animator Ray Harryhausen’s It Came From Beneath the Sea (1955). It’s about a giant octopus that destroys a city. Mine is the story of a mild mannered home owner who is attacked by a monster that bursts out of his kitchen sink. You won’t see the Golden Gate Bridge torn down in my film but it’s the spirit of the thing that counts. The reason I animate at all is because of the enormous impact the films of Ray Harryhausen had on me as a kid. It may have taken 40 years but I’m finally going to make a film that pays tribute to the man.


Early indications are that I’ve made a film that will fall through the cracks on the festival circuit; too violent for animation festivals, not horror enough for the genre festivals, and too unique to fit in with traditional short film blocks. I base this on the early reaction I’ve received from each of these groups. For this reason I am strongly considering forgoing festivals altogether. To be perfectly honest, I’m not as enthusiastic about them as I used to be and the financial investment is not one I’m ready to make anymore. I’m already pursuing short film hosting sites to see if they have any interest. Regardless of their position the result is you may be seeing FROM HELL HE RIDES much sooner than expected.


I’ve completed the first draft for my next film. It’s much shorter than may recent work; I’m guessing it will run about 8 minutes. It’s also completely different in that it’s more comedy than horror which may be one of the reasons it’s coming together so easily. I needed a change from all the violence and coarse language of the past 5 years. I won’t be rushing into production any time soon but it’s nice to be working on something different.