Location: The Maltings Theatre & Cinema
/ 2009 / 92 min / Cert. 12a
A dark comedy in stop-motion, Mary & Max is a tale of friendship between two unlikely pen pals: Mary, a lonely, eight-year-old girl living in Melbourne, and Max, a forty-four-year old, severely obese old man living in New York. A story told from two perspectives through traditional clay animation with attention to detail in colour and character, Mary & Max is an animated journey of friendship, loneliness and the obscurity of life.
Mary & Max had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2009 and was the first animated film, and the first Australian film, in the festival's 25-year history to screen in the coveted opening night slot. The film took five years to complete at a cost of 8.3 million Australian dollars (approximately £5.5 million). The project required a crew of over 120 people and a team of six animators who shot continuously for 57 weeks, using 133 separate sets, 212 puppets, and 475 miniature props, including a fully functional Underwood typewriter. Director Adam Elliot is noted for his use of traditional 'in-camera' techniques, which means every prop set and character is a 'real' miniature handcrafted object.
For the narration Elliot employed the services of the iconic comedian and stage performer, Barry Humphries (aka Dame Edna). Max is voiced by Academy Award winning actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman (Capote, Synecdoche New York)), and Mary by Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense, Little Miss Sunshine). Elliot was determined that young Mary should be voiced by a real eight-year-old girl and after auditioning over 40 actresses finally chose Bethany Whitmore.
“This tale of two outsiders is lovingly rendered in traditional claymation and Elliot's expressive creations are wonderfully brought to life by the talented voice cast...”
- John Ferguson, Radio Times
Georgina McNamara I UK I 2012 I 1min
A tongue-in-cheek response to the fanfare and hype of the summer’s sporting events. As athletic awareness intensifies, we are prompted to kick-start better habits and to improve our physical fitness. Fit is a playful re-staging of an exercise class in stop-motion, playing with the notion of sport and speed in the style of a flick-book.
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