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Howie Shia’s ‘BAM’ Now Streaming

Canadian animator Howie Shia’s 2016 short film produced by the NFB dives headfirst into the awkward reality of how we handle aggression and rage.

Following its festival circuit run, Canadian animator Howie Shia’s 2015 short film, BAM, is now available for download and streaming online via the National Film Board of Canada website.

BAM is a modern adaptation of the myth of Hercules, telling the story of a young boxer struggling to negotiate between his shy, bookish nature and a divinely violent temper. Where does this rage come from? Is it psychological or environmental -- or is it something altogether more primordial?

Born to Taiwanese parents in Saskatoon, Shia is an illustrator, animator and filmmaker currently based in Toronto. He previously directed the animated shorts Ice Ages (2004), Flutter (2006) and Peggy Baker: Four Phrases (2009).

The five-minute BAM, which was written and directed by Shia and produced by the NFB’s Maral Mohammadian and Michael Fukushima, had its world premiere in 2015 at the Toronto Independent Film Festival, and was nominated for an Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television Award for Best Animated Short at the 4th Canadian Screen Awards.

You can read AWN’s interview with Shia about the making of the film at: ‘Bam’ -- A Boxer’s Life of Anger and Rage. Shia also recently contributed to a video for a re-imagining of David Bowie’s “Small Plot of Land” from the album Outside by the band from Bowie’s final album, Blackstar. The video plays with the idea of deconstructing the flamboyant anonymity that was a part of so many of the legendary artist’s personas:

Jennifer Wolfe's picture

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network, Jennifer Wolfe has worked in the Media & Entertainment industry as a writer and PR professional since 2003.