Story development

After mentioning that we might like to run with the idea of a humorous short/episodes with a style similar to those of PSA’s we looked at a few modern day Public Safety announcements…

The dangers of selfie sticks: a mock PSA created by Pizza Hut regarding one of today’s growing epidemics…

Behind the scenes:

With this PSA spoof the humour comes from the exaggeration: the length of the selfie sticks, the abnormal places they’re being used and from the seriousness of the narrator juxtaposed against the silliness of the overall video. It’s a growing trend within today’s society so it’s a topic the audience can relate to, everyone knows what a selfie stick is and has watched them being used awkwardly in public which just adds another level of humour, as the audience is able to become more personally involved with the film.

This spoof then lead us on to thinking about the other growing trends within our society today and the possibility of basing our episodes around one of these trends…

Some of the trends we discussed:

  • Duck face: Living your life with a permanent duck face, the PSA would show a character that had pulled the face one too many times and has ended up with it permanently, warning the audience and younger generation of the dangers of duck facing.
  • Clown Epidemic: For some unknown reason people today are dressing up as clowns and standing around the streets holding weapons to try and scare the public. Only we’d put a twist on it and have a PSA for parents about dealing with the fact your daughter is dating a clown.
  • Pokemon Go: Again this was another popular game throughout the summer with reportings of people being so involved with the game that they walk into oncoming traffic, along with other incidents. We thought we could take it even further and the game developed into a virtual reality headset/ viewfinder and the consequences of people using them in public.. walking off cliffs, trying to catch/ chasing members of the public without realising… etc.
  • Donald Trump: A public safety announcement regarding the dangers of Donald Trump.
  • Binge-watching: With Netflix and Amazon Prime releasing a whole series this one is a real problem. The PSA could show the public the subtle decisions/signs that may be harmless but will pretty soon result in full blown binge-watching, everything would be exaggerated eg. surrounded by a pile of rubbish, square eyes from watching so much tv…
  • Hipsters: ‘so your daughter is dating a hipster’ A PSA for parents on how to approach and talk to a ‘hipster’.

We had just come back from having a fire drill in uni and were discussing the fact that we didn’t really rush ourselves out of the building… how one day there might actually be a fire and all they’ll find in the aftermath will be the bones of an animation student…

This then lead us on to discuss all the difficulties we face as animation students, the late nights coming up to deadlines, team disputes, rendering, maya crashing.. graduating, entering the industry and finding out it doesn’t get any better… We even considered having death stalk the students like it’s prey while they work…just lurking around them…

The idea of having death as a character came from a series of shorts we watched were death isn’t actually that great at his job…

We would call it ‘Kimmy wants to be an animator’ and the PSA would give the audience an insight into the life of an animation student through Kimmy.

However, it was mentioned to us by a tutor that although the judges of an animation festival would understand the jokes and references we were making, the general audience wouldn’t understand most of the terms we’d have to use.. such as rendering. So instead we are considering covering the perils of student life in general. This would be easier for an audience to relate to rather than a specific course – even if they haven’t been to university everyone has still heard stories of student life… eg. everyone knows that student accommodation isn’t great.

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