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On a Desert Island With....Three Kinder Folk and an Animator

Nicolas Bellanger, Arlene Sherman, Yvonne Anderson, Alex Williams

Nicolas Bellanger's Alice.

This month we asked our inevitable question of, "If stranded on a desert island, which ten films (animated or otherwise) would you want to have with you?" of four people involved with children and animation: Nicolas Bellanger, director Alice, a short based on children's drawings and their voices; Arlene Sherman, film and animation producer for Children's Television Workshop's Sesame Street; Yvonne Andersen, animation teacher and founder of The Yellow Ball Workshop. We also queried Alex Williams, who is creating something that will be seen by millions of young eyes next year, as an animator on Warner Bros.'Quest for Camelot, and has been known to help out with his father's films.

As in any classroom, there will always be kids who want the same toys or have the same birthday. Thus, it is no surprise that several titles inevitably show up in more than one top ten list. This month, the luck of the draw favors The Wrong Trousers, Tale of Tales, Pinnochio, and the animated sequences from The Charge of the Light Brigade, which all got counted twice.

Nicolas Bellanger

 "When I was 5 or 6 years old, I was 'a child who drew.' Each of my drawings crystallized the essence of a story that an adult would title according to my explanations. These stories dealt with actions and thus could involve movements. I had been thinking for long time about trying to animate a child's drawing. At the same time, Jérôme Coullet, the composer, wanted to create an opera using everyday noises and sounds. So, we decided to work together with Entracte, the animation studio,and plunged into the world of 2-3 years olds and a crèche. We captured some elements in the soundtrack and built the screenplay as if for a documentary: we wanted to remain close to the young children's concerns. For the images, we worked with 5-6 children, who listened to the soundtrack and drew. I used the results to direct Alice, of which you can see an extract here.

"I came up with this list but it was very hard to choose. If I had to do another one tomorrow, it would certainly be different."

--Translated from the French by Annick Teninge

 "Quand j'avais 5 ou 6 ans, j'étais un "enfant qui dessine". Les dessins étaient chacun la cristallisation d'une histoire qu'un adulte pouvait légender selon mes indications. Ces histoires comprenaient des actions et pouvaient donc impliquer des mouvements. Depuis longtemps, trotte dans ma tête l'idée de faire vivre un dessin d'enfant par l'animation. Parallèlement, Jérôme Coullet, le musicien, désirait créer un opéra consitué de bruits et sons du quotidien. Nous nous sommes donc associés avec la société de production Entracte et nous nous sommes baignés dans le monde des enfants de 2 et 3 ans, dans une crèche. Nous avons capté les éléments de la partie sonore en gardant comme trame scénaristique un axe documentaire: rester auprès des préoccupations des tout petits. Ensuite, pour l'image, nous avons sollicité des enfants de 5 et 6 ans. Il sont écouté notre bande sonore et ont dessiné. Je me suis inspiré de cette production pour réaliser Alice, dont vous pouvez voir un extrait."

"J'ai écrit cette liste de films, mais il en manque plein. Il est très difficile de choisir. Si je recommencais une telle liste demain, elle serait sans doute différente."

1.La Règle du Jeu (The Rules of the Game) by Jean Renoir 2.Le Roi et l'Oiseau (The King and Mr. Bird) by Paul Grimault and Jacques Prévert 3. Les Demoiselles de Rochefort by Jacques Demy 4. Les Temps Modernes (Modern Times ) by Charles Chaplin 5. A Bout de souffle (Breathless) by Jean-Luc Godard 6. La Joie de vivre by Hector Hoppin and Anthony Gross 7. Meet John Doe by Frank Capra 8. Felix the Cat films by Otto Messmer 9.Le Herisson dans le Brouillard (The Hedgehog in the Mist, from The Tale of Tales ) by Yuri Norstein 10.The Village by Mark Baker

The Village by Mark Baker

Arlene Sherman

1. Fantasia by Walt Disney 2. The Wrong Trousers by Nick Park 3. Frank Film by Frank and Caroline Mouris 4. Pinnochio by Walt Disney 5-10. Betty Boop cartoons or anything else by Max Fleischer. Yvonne Anderson "A list of 10 animated films to have with me on a desert island? This is hard. In 2 minutes, I had 30 essential films!" 1. Hen, His Wife by Igor Kovalyov 2. A Black and White Movie by Stanislav Sokolov 3. Ubu by Geoff Dunbar 4. The Son by Ryszard Czekela 5. The Devils Ball by Ladislaw Starewicz (an excerpt from The Mascot) 6. Hunger by Peter Foldes 7. The Hedgehog in the Mist fromThe Tale of Tales by Yuri Norstein 8. The Owl Who Married a Goose by Caroline Leaf 9. Dreamland Express by David Anderson 10. The animated sequences by Richard Williams in the live-action British feature The Charge of the Light Brigade. Alex Williams 1. The Thief and The Cobbler (original director's cut) 2. The Wrong Trousers by Aardman Animation 3. A Christmas Carol by Richard Williams, 197, featuring the voice talent of myself as Tiny Tim. 4. Pinocchio by Walt Disney 5. Title sequence from The Return of The Pink Panther, animated by Richard Williams 6. The animation interludes from The Charge of The Light Brigade (Tony Richardson, 1967) by Richard Williams 7. The Jungle Book by Walt Disney 8. A Close Shave by Nick Park 9. Bambi by Walt Disney 10. What's Opera Doc? by Chuck Jones.

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