OCTOBER 09

OCTOBER 09

Postby Barry » Fri Oct 02, 2009 7:09 pm

2nd October 09

A frantic week and I am certainly scant of breath at the end, but it has been productive. Today we have done the post on the commercial and it's all rather good. Great to be directing a voice talent again ad sitting in an edit suite. I am very much at home there. I have probably seen the commercial too many times and can see its flaws. It is deliberately not as polished as it might have been but bursts onto the screen with colour and energy. A good experience really, with a great crew and team, and being at home has helped. Kneeling for every frame is not as easy as it was a few years back though.

There's a big gap where the play was but I have still being going through the proofs of the book wishing I could have had more pages, but then this is called Animation Basics.

A lot of interviews and questions from students this week, and I am trying to get ready for several weeks of exhausting travel, which is great but I am itching to get going on a long sustained project. The first reviews for Fantastic Mr Fox came out today and Empire certainly loves it, and revelled in the quirkiness of stop motion. I can't wait to see it but am still feeling sick to the stomach for another big stop motion film that I did not get to work. All these talks I am doign round the world are fine but I need to be creating new stuff. There's a lot of life in this old dog yet, and this old dog can certainly show the world a few new tricks.
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Re: OCTOBER 09

Postby Barry » Mon Oct 05, 2009 2:41 pm

5th October 2009

Well I'm on the way to Argentina, via Madrid, chile and not sure where else. I'm excited about the festival and meeting new people and seeing films I have missed but I am still reluctant to be talking about things from the dim and distant past. Oh that I had a big new project to get fired up about. After recent films, my films are looking very fragile and old........I am so keen to break new ground and get down to some serious animated acting and interesting storytelling. I want to contribute to the aniamtion industry not just comment on it.
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Re: OCTOBER 09

Postby Barry » Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:38 pm

Thursday 15th October 2009

Just recovering from the long trip to Argentina and i am off again for more workshops.....Paris this time. As with Argentina I'm a bit anxious about this, but will have a fantastic time when i get there. It has certainly been a frantically busy ten days, with going to the other side of the world, doing a bit more on the commercial ( wel revoicing it to make the dialogue flow more smoothly), having a real panic about the designs of the panto, and a general panic about everything else. All this manic activity still is not translating into a living wage.

I bought Corlaine at the airport, but a combination of the room still moving from 32 hours travelling and the very kinetic movement of Coraline meant I only watched a small piece of it. but what lush visuals, and what a scale. And of course Fantastic mr Fox has been premiered this week - two very different styles of animation, and i have to say both would have been within my skills. Drat.
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Re: OCTOBER 09

Postby Barry » Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:21 pm

Friday 23rd October 2009

I've certainly been tardy in keeping up this diary but I have literally not had a second to myself since I last wrote the last entry. Busy would be an understatement. I rushed off to Paris without having unpacked from Argentina, to be part of an interesting festival celebrating European film. I'm so flattered to be the guest at such a festival along with Milos Forman. The staff were so friendly and I proably looked a little confused as the festival was in several cinemas dotted round the outskirts of Paris. I spent four days literally not knowing where I was, and even the amazing chateau we had a final dinner in I have yet to locate. But a great festival and I cam away with an honoury award.
Back to England and straight into action with a series of three talks at Bradford College. Perhaps this was a bit of a conveyor belt type of day, broken only by being thrust into a radio studio, but it was a good day. One audience gave me a hard time - they really did not want to be there and were very vocal. The other two were fantastic. Doing one hour talks is not my favourite though as the need to show afew films cuts down what I can talk about. It really is just skimming the surface, but that is not what I have done for the last few days in Staffs university. A very friendly crowd and I did six sessions over three days, ranging from analysing a ballet, Still Life at the Penguin cafe of course, movement by movement, to practical classes, and then showing all my films, and finishing the week with a clip from The Birds. A good week and I hope to be a bit of a regular there. The crepes, or oatcakes as they call them, were pretty wonderful, as they had been in Paris.

Along with all this i have struggled to try to design the panto, tried to write some job letters, and struggled to get on top of the book corrections and proofs. Let alone keeping up with the bills and housework and mails. I've yet to get to the Garrick's History Boys, but I did go with Jo, my regular Matthew Bourne companion, to see his Dorian gray and is was an astonishing, slick, sophisticated, erotic, startling piece of work. It didn't have the emotion of his Swan Lake but it was powerful and a great piece of sexual storytelling.

The evenign was a bit coloured though by having seen a dead dog on the opposite carriage way, his limp body being thrown about as cars hit it every few seconds. In the middle of racing traffic I couldn't stop and move it off the road, and I'm now feeling the distress of the parent who will find the family dog. Actually I had a cry on the way to the theatre. Very upsetting.

I'm also aware of the shadow of Fantastic Mr Fox that opened in cinemas today - the advertising campaign is incredible. It is everywhere. Some good reviews, but some absolute damning ones, almost vitriolic. I don't for a second expect that my experience gives me the right to have worked on that film, but what hurts is knowing jsut how much I could have contributed to it.
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Re: OCTOBER 09

Postby Barry » Fri Oct 30, 2009 7:34 pm

30th October 2009

Another week and another lot of travelling but at least I did have a few days at home....frantic days catching with so many speculative projects. I even managed a couple of nights at the theatre - The History Boys and Dorian Gray, both good in different ways.
I wasn't ready to go off to Italy but early tuesday and I was at the airport again. No sooner than Marta, Amedeo, and Paolo had picked me up and driven me to Parma, than I was sat in front of a puppet show, but on just for me. This was extracts showing off various puppets performed by the Ferrari family....great fun. Soe really simple puppets, some more historical and complex - a sheer joy to be having my own performance. Then I was whisked away again to watch a performance of Verdi's Otello in a one hour version for kids in the stalls of the jaw dropping Teatro Regio. I jsut spent my time looking at that, but the show was an inventive interpretation with full sized puppets, and a few arias. The kids were loving it. And i was loving being in the theatre and chatting to the senior management - beign made to feel so welcome. Verdi was looking down at me from every corner - that portrait I fell in love with in Quartet is every few yards. A meal in a house that had verdi connections and pictures everywhere and thn I did rather collaps exhausted.
Next morning, it was verdi again with a children's production of Nabucco - on the stage this time with chorus performers and children as the chorus of Hebrew slaves, and a rather kinetic narrator. A house full of kids loving the whole experience. Do we do this in the UK? Certainly here were 1500 kids loving a generous slice of grand opera. Straight away I was off again, to the Farnesi theatre which has to be the most astonishing piece of architecture and beauty I have ever seen. An old 17th century theatre, bombed in the war but restored, though not necessarily functioning. But the sheer scale took my breath away - yes they had aquatic displays. Fantastic. A race through the old masters in the National Gallery seemed cruelly overshadowed by this. But what a sublime few hours. And then the meeting with the minister of culture that was the point of the trip - and it seemed to go very well with all manner of suggestions and proposals. Very exciting. Please let some of these happen.
After all this I had to have a quick snooze before Nabucco proper - now that was an amazing experience in every respect, and a warm friendly and though smart, not a stuffy one. The cast particularly welcomed the audience. An amazing building and I am very touched and thrilled to have witnessed this event and the Verdi festival in action, and to have met all the people this week. I wish it was not all about meeting people but working with them - hopefully that will come. It's all been a bit humbling and overwhleming, and at a late night meal after the opera I really couldn't take any more and my brain had a bit of a melt down.
And so I am home, broke and car less but rich in yet another extraordinary experience. Experience does not paythe bills waiting for me but..........
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