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WATCH: Pixar Short ‘Kitbull’ a Heartwarming Ode to Friendship

One of the first three short films to emerge from the studio’s Sparkshorts experimental storytelling initiative, ‘Kitbull’ is directed by Rosana Sullivan and produced by Kathryn Hendrickson.

Pixar has released Kitbull, one of the first three projects to emerge from the studio’s SparkShorts experimental storytelling initiative program into the wild, and it’s packed with hand-drawn goodness.

Directed by Pixar story artist Rosana Sullivan and produced by Kathryn Hendrickson, Kitbull reveals an unlikely connection that sparks between two creatures: a fiercely independent stray kitten and a pit bull. Together, they experience friendship for the first time.

Kitbull premiered last month at the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood, alongside Purl and Smash and Grab, and has now made its way online via the Pixar YouTube channel. First unveiled last year, the SparkShorts program was designed to discover new storytellers, explore new storytelling techniques, and experiment with new production workflows.

Pixar has experimented with 2D animation before -- the 2010 short Day & Night combined 2D and CG elements -- but this is the studio’s first entirely hand-drawn short film. “I’ve always loved the charm of a hand-drawn image. No two artists will draw the same way. And no two drawings are going to be exactly alike,” Sullivan says of her approach to making Kitbull.

Learn more about how Kitbull was brought to life in the “Behind-the-Scenes” and “Meet the Filmmakers” videos below:

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.