Prelude is a whimsical story of creativity versus order set in a mysterious laboratory. A young girl named Fluke is eager to bring life and color into the bland, regimented world of her stuffy Grandpa Theo. When an accident in the cogs below leaves her unsupervised, Fluke’s creativity gets carried away, and both she and Grandpa learn the beauty of imperfection—and the eternal power of love.

Festivals

San Francisco FROZEN FILM FESTIVAL 2015 (Official Selection) - San Francisco, CA

Asheville Cinema Festival 2014 (Official Selection) - Asheville North Carolina

Another Hole in the Head Film Festival 2014 (Official Selection) - San Francisco, California

Napa Valley Film Festival 2014 (Official Selection) - Napa California

International Film Festival of Cinematic Arts 2014 (Official Selection) - Los Angeles California

Animazspot Film Festival 2014 (Official Selection) - Los Angeles California

Nineworlds Film Festival 2014 (WINNER in Short Animation Category) - London, UK

MovingMedia International Student Film Festival 2014 (WINNER 2nd Place in Animation Category) -Detroit

Laughlin International Film Festival 2014 (Official Selection) - Laughlin Nevada

Mosaic Film Festival 2014 (FINALIST) - Grand Rapids, Michigan

 

REVIEWS

 

"Too bad that it  is too short, I would have loved to continue watching!" Sylvia Comillon

 

"Good rhythm, story and animation." Paul Droff

 

"This is good, solid filmmaking."  Malcolm Turner

 

"Fun, entertaining and thought provoking. Great character design and animation. On a philosophical level I love that creation is an intelligently designed accident. And God the father who is too busy to pay proper attention to God the daughter. As above so below the characters are very human even if they are the creators of the universe. Well paced with just the right touch of humor."   Larry Loc

 

MAKING OF

hgfhgfhgfjgf


Directed by

Mitra Shahidi

 

Produced by

Shauna Lacoste and Mitra Shahidi

 

Associate Producers

Dila Beksac Trenton Thompson

 

Animation Supervisor

Sherrie H. Sinclair

  

Supervising Animator for Fluke  

 Priscila Vertamatti

 

Supervising Animator for Grandpa Theo  

Mike Walters

 

Animators

Jenna Calvao

Kota Dimeler

Javier Espinoza

Shawn Finn

Toby Hefflin

Abigail Lee

Jessie Lu

Mitra Shahidi

Guillermo Martinez

 

Supporting Animators

Kevin Collins

Brian Haggard

Kania Sukotjo

Della Deviani

 

Cleanup Animators

Willie Azali

Jenna Calvao

Javier Espinoza

Shawn Finn

Toby Hefflin

Jessie Lu

Clary Rajas

Mitra Shahidi

Anand Vedawala

Priscila Vertamatti 

Mike Walters

Lori Schkufza

Caryl Foote

  

Digital Ink & Paint

Daniel Heitzman

Paul Slice

Tim Larson

Anand Vedawala

Shawn Finn

Mike Walters

Priscila Vertamatti

Mitra Shahidi

 

Story Supervisors

Mitra Shahidi

Javier Espinoza    

  

Additional Story

Urbano Espinosa

Mike Walters

Unnikrishnan Raveendranathan

Adam Blaine Dix

 

Character Design

Adam Blaine Dix

Mitra Shahidi

Lolita Sudjono

Priscila Vertamatti

Mike Walters

Guillermo Martinez

 

Color Art Director

Konstantin Pogorelov

 

Environment / Props

Jeongyong Kim

Mitra Shahidi

Aaron Smith

Darron Smith

Lolita Sudjono

Mike Walters

 

 Texturing and Matte Painting

Linda Chen

Robert Chew

Andrew Mar

Emerson Tung

Konstantin Pogolerov

 

Modeling

Alexander Barnes

Sujin Park

Maja Perez

Sonia Tiwari

Bache Tom

Konstantin Pogorelov

 

Visual Effects Supervisor

Dila Beksac

 

Lighting

Dila Beksac

Mark Watson

  

Particle Effects

Ruwantha Weddikkara

 

3D Animation

Paul Slice

Mitra Shahidi 

Konstantin Pogorelov

 

  Compositing

Dila Beksac

Mitra Shahidi

  

Music By

Mitra Shahidi

 

Assistant Composer

Brandon Harami

 

Title/Credits Motion Graphics

Micah Jordan

 

Production Assistants

Nicholas Orsi

Paul Slice

 

  

  

MENTOR AND ANIMATION SUPERVISOR

 

 Sherrie H. Sinclair worked in character animation for Walt Disney Feature Animation Florida nine years before becoming Traditional Animation Director for the School of Animation and Visual Effects at the Academy of Art University in San francisco.

Sherrie holds a degree in Art History from FSU in Tallahassee, FL which led to an Assistant Directorship at the Meridian Museum of Art in Mississippi. She earned a second BFA degree in Illustration from AAU and then worked as a stage artist with Storyboard Express in San Francisco before joining the animation team at Disney.

Film credits include Lion King, Pocahontas, Mulan, Tarzan, and Lilo and Stitch, She interned on the Roger Rabbit short, Trail Mix-Up, and contributed to the Aladdin and Pocahontas games and the Goofy TV special, How to Haunt a House.

Sherrie continues her art and animation interests through involvement in drawing workshops, painting, commissions, and independent animated short films.

DIRECTOR

1920350_507706475920_285865352_n.jpg

Mitra Shahidi is a San Francisco Bay Area based filmmaker and art director. Born in Istanbul with an Iranian descent, she moved to the USA to pursue her dream of making animated movies. She got her BFA from Academy of Art University San Francisco, where she made her first short film Prelude, and realized that making short films with a powerful social message is her calling. She went on to interning in 3D Animation at Mixamo, Inc to start her career in the world of animation. Currently she is the Art Director at Pear Therapeutics, a Silicon Valley startup company focusing on mobile therapeutic games and apps. When she is not painting and designing at work, Mitra works on short films with deep meaning and message. Alongside her life’s work, she loves reading, painting and composing. She was trained in classical piano and enjoys playing and composing music using some other instruments such as flute and guitar - a skill she utilizes in shaping the the soundtrack of her films. 

Contact: mytras@gmail.com          

 

Interview with Napa Valley Film Festival

 

● What was the motivation behind making your film?

Making films with a strong meaning and ability to move people is my calling, and this movie is the heart and soul of what I believe creativity is. Jumping out of boxes, breaking rules, flow and love inspired me to create this film. The actual event that lead to this film was that I had made a piece of music that sounded mystical, whimsical and mysterious – and I kept imagining a little girl character painting things all by herself when I made the music. That lead to a fully fleshed out animated film that carried a message that I think is important for the world - keep your mind, your soul and energy fresh, open and very young.

 

● What was the most important lesson you had to learn that has had a positive effect on your film?

 Collaboration, letting go and trusting others to carry the ball if you drop it was one of the most important lessons for me. The movie’s production kept going for years, and there would be times I just couldn’t do multiple things at once. I learned to not be so strictly married to my ideas and ways, as I can be wrong, and let others take care and pour their love and energy into creating this film, completely collaboratively.

 

● What’s harder: getting started or being able to keep going?

Definitely to keep going is harder. When you get started the sky is the limit. You can do anything, you have this grandiose idea, this limitless energy and reckless optimism. However, when you start resolving story problems, getting down to details of flow, character and expression, each line you draw on paper requires a great deal of decision making, spread over a long period of time. And all the while you make those decisions you have to stay focused on the big picture, make sure that every color choice, every music note is helping tell the story. You need to constantly search for the best possible way to tell your story and then believe with all of your heart that the decisions you make are the best possible decisions and that they keep you on the right path. You may lose faith about prior decisions that has lead to new ones. You may need to go back and look at them objectively, and when you find out they do not work any longer, ruthlessly change them. Spread over years of production and a big group of people, this is a very intense and taxing process but at the same time it is one of the most exhilarating experiences you can have. There is however something even harder than to keep going: to know that you could have kept going, and didn’t.

 

● What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film better for you?

What makes a film great for me is its story and how much heart and faith went into telling it. I couldn’t care less about the production value, the fame of the actors or budget. A film can be shot on super 8, done in a day and be completely silent but if it tells a great story, moves me, captures my attention and makes me care, then that is a great film.

 

● What is one mistake filmmakers tend to make, regardless of experience?

They focus on the wrong things. They focus on the “taste of the target audience”, on the “crazy camera angle” on the “technical awesomeness of the particle effects” or if it is animated, “the cool character design” or “the insanely complex background”. What they actually need to be thinking about is “What is my story? What am I trying to say? Who is my character? What does he/she feel?” I am not advocating everybody to burn their suitcases of movie budget money and make a film with their phone camera. I am only saying that in order to make a great film, it is crucial to ask these questions first and find the best answers, then use your skills/money/resources to make it visually and audibly appealing in order to tell the story better. At every step of the way you should stop and ask, “does this help my story?” If the answer is yes, then you can make a great film that looks fantastic and people will remember while listening to the soundtrack on a loop at work. 

 

You can read another interview of the director with another festival in San Francisco here.