Processed Storytelling

Richard Brody has an interesting, if somewhat discursive blog posting at The New Yorker on “The Problem with Processed Storytelling,” which begins with a discussion of Pixar’s “22 Rules of Storytelling.” Brady says, “Pixar films make me feel as if I were watching the cinematic equivalent of irresistibly processed food, with a ramped-up and carefully calibrated dosing of the emotional versions of salt, sugar, and fat.” However, this is not a rant against all things Pixar, but rather an interesting, if not fully thought through, discussion of the problems of directors who write their own scripts versus collaborative efforts (he sort of opts for the latter).

Lucerne Animation Academy’s LIAA-TV

Yuri Norstein at 2009's Lucerne Animation Academy

About a year ago, the Lucerne School of Art and Design, in Lucerne, Switzerland, put on its first Lucerne Animation Academy (LIAA). The four-day event was publicized as a “a great opportunity for people from theory and practice to meet and share their views on the characteristics of dramaturgy in animation films, in all its aesthetic and technical aspects.” Now, LIAA has posted videos of what they feel were “the most essential presentations held at the conference last year,” what they call LIAA-TV.


Among the most familiar names among the talks posted, mostly in English,  include: Yuri Norstein: on “Animation and Poetry” (in Russian) (see image on top),  the Brothers Quay on “Music as a Provocative and Authentic Form” (see image above) and Priit Pärn on “How to Construct a Story – From Idea to Screenplay” (see image below).


In addition, you can find  talks by  filmmakers Jerzy Kucia, Georges Schwizgebel,  David O. Reilly, as well as ace composer Norman Roger, along with a number of others. Many thanks go to Otto Alder, Co-Head of the Animation Department for his work on the conference.