AFTER TWENTY MONTHS OF CONTINUOUS HARD WORK AND INTENSE, FOCUSED ACTIVITY. AFTER MORE THAN 500 DAYS OF CREATIVE EFFORT, AFTER COUNTLESS HOURS OF ANIMATING, ORGANISING, LIFTING, SWEATING, PERFORMING, FRETTING, CAJOLING, RIGGING, LIGHTING, BUILDING, PAINTING, PROGRAMMING AND PERFECTIONISM - - - - - - TODAY IS THE LAST DAY.
Which means that at the end of today we’ll have finished the stop-motion shoot. The beautiful sets will have done their work. The lights are switched off and returned to store, the props are filed away (for the sequel of course!) the puppets are bathed, tucked up in their beds and kissed goodnight. Our amazing, amazing animation studio briefly returns to its former incarnation as a warehouse.
Already the studio is being cleared at astonishing speed. Walls come tumbling down and bits of tavern, ship, castle, cabin and kitchen are spirited away into storage. Meanwhile, the crew all stand around shocked and excited - they look like the victims of some mind-boggling (but non-threatening) natural disaster - a rain of frogs for example.
For the past year and a half, the studio floor has been crazy-busy – a maze of different units, each one fired-up with energy and purpose. It’s normally pretty quiet except for the repeated recorded voices of Hugh Grant and the rest of the cast shouting out strange orders or pirate curses – “Sweet Neptune’s briny pants!” or “Kraken’s biscuits!” But it’s not quiet today. It’s as noisy and bustling as Blood Island on a Saturday night.
You can imagine the scene: it’s a bit like the Last Day of School. Lots of giggling, photograph-taking and hanging out. I haven’t hung out for the entire shoot for goodness sake! But today! Ah, today I’ve got time to chat, reminisce AND hang out – all before noon. It’s uncanny.
Later this afternoon and especially this evening, I expect to move on to a whole new and important phase of the production viz: the weeping, hugging, kissing and getting incredibly drunk part. Really looking forward to it!
And now, ladies and gentlemen, an exclusive video blog from The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists! Arrrr!