Pixar SparkShorts

Pixar SparkShorts Directors discuss creativity, storytelling and representation at the latest VIEW Conference Online Event.

VIEW Conference is pleased to announce a live PreVIEW event focusing on Pixar’s SparkShorts programme. The free online session, which takes place on February 26, 2021 at 10:00 PST / 18:00 GMT / 19:00 CET, brings together the directors of five films from Pixar Animation Studios’ programme for a lively discussion about their work. Dan Sarto, editor of Animation World Network, will moderate this from Los Angeles. The event is organised by VIEW Conference in partnership with OGR Torino and Pixar Animation Studios.

“The Pixar SparkShorts programme has already proven itself to be an inspiring way to nurture talent,” says Conference Director Dr. Maria Elena Gutierrez. “I am thrilled that these five talented directors will be joining us at our special VIEW Conference PreVIEW event to talk about their work and offer further inspiration to aspiring artists and professionals alike.”

The first SparkShorts film, Burrow, uses 2D animation to tell the story of a young rabbit who enthusiastically pursues her dream to create the perfect underground home. The film is directed by Madeline Sharafian, a lead story artist at Pixar who worked as a storyboard artist on the Oscar-winning Coco, and as a story lead on Disney and Pixar’s Onward. Burrow was recently included on the short list for the Best Animated Short at the 2021 Academy Awards.

In Float, a father faces an unusual dilemma when he discovers that his son has remarkable ability that sets him apart from the norm. Bobby Alcid Rubio directs, having worked at Pixar as a story artist since 2007. Rubio began his career as a comic book artist, before working on a number of animated features including Pocahontas, Hercules and Mulan.

With its tale of a talkative boy and a non-verbal autistic girl, Loop explores the different ways in which people experience the world. Loop’s director is Erica Milsom, a documentary filmmaker who has won awards for her behind-the-scenes stories on Pixar films such as Ratatouille, Up and Inside Out. Milsom is also known for her independent films including festival favourite So Much Yellow.

Also on the 2021 Academy Awards short list, Out chronicles a big day in the life of Greg who, with the help of his excitable dog, tackles a personal challenge he has been avoiding for a long time. Director Stephen Clay Hunter builds on his experience as a Pixar animator and animation supervisor, with a long track record working on features ranging from A Bug’s Life and Finding Nemo through to Toy Story 4.

Finally, in Wind, a grandmother and her grandson search for a way to escape the strange and endless chasm in which they live out their lives. The director is Edwin Chang, who began his Pixar career in 2005 as a global technology intern. He has since gained expertise as a simulation artist and supervisor working on films including Up, Inside Out and Soul.

Launched in 2019, the SparkShorts programme is an initiative that allows selected Pixar staff to develop their own animated short films with limited creative oversight on shortened production schedules. The programme encourages artists to unlock their own creativity and explore new ideas, workflows and storytelling techniques.

The 2021 PreVIEW season will deliver a range of inspiring events every month through to the official launch of VIEW Conference on October 17.

Sign up for the VIEW 2021 newsletter for more PreVIEW updates Revisit VIEW Conference 2020 through our comprehensive online archive. See below.

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Register now for Pixar SparkShorts Directors Discussion

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