From the "Things That Are Inspiring Me This Morning" files, this animated short by Moonbot studios of Shreveport, Louisiana has been nominated for the Oscar in a category that is usually dominated by Pixar. In fact, one of the founders of Moonbot was a conceptual artist on Toy Story, sprung from that fertile breeding ground for artists that is Pixar studios.
Speaking of Pixar, in order to take the trophy home, this little short is up against the Disney-owned juggernaut's "La Luna" and that's a pretty tall order. Still... I'm predisposed to root for the little guy.
The LA Times turned out some great coverage of the unlikely film from Shreveport, including the formation of Moonbot in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and the death of Michael Jackson. But I think that Moonbot says it best in their artist's statement on Vimeo:
"Inspired, in equal measures, by Hurricane Katrina, Buster Keaton, The Wizard of Oz, and a love for books, “Morris Lessmore” is a story of people who devote their lives to books and books who return the favor. Morris Lessmore is a poignant, humorous allegory about the curative powers of story."
For your consideration...
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, Trailer
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr Morris Lessmore Trailer from Moonbot Studios on Vimeo.
UPDATE: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore won the academy award for best animated short. Unfortunately, this means that they have taken down the full video. I've replaced it with the trailer, which at least gives you a feel for the thing. I'm sure that if you hunt around, the internet being what it is, someone has if available somewhere. I personally join you in hoping they make the full thing available soon for legal download or purchase. -Scott