A Town Called Hubris
It's been some time since we've shown our faces round the internet and surely some of you are worried we fell down a well or just up and skipped town. Well, we're sorry for the lack of chatter and the first thing we'd like to say is please do not mistake our absence for idleness. We've been hard at work, struggling to strangle some life out of our felty offspring. Unfortunately for all of us, they aren't making it easy. Nope. They're fighting us with their tiny hands every step of the way.
After sinking something like six months into our animation attempts, we decided to abandon that tangent as both impossibly, grindingly time-consumptive and ultimately a disservice to the puppets we'd already made. What makes the latchkey kids and parent-less orphans of Frown Town so darn endearing is their tactile reality, the way the light catches Orly's glasses, the way Judy's crinkle-cut hair bounces as she spazzes out, the pathetic quiver of James' lower lip. Frown Town has always been and must remain a puppet show. While animation led us pretty far astray with the idea that we could accomplish more with fewer hands, the results, no matter how arduously orchestrated, felt flat and lifeless. At the end of the day, we might not be Jim Henson, but we for sure as hell ain't Pixar.
The problem, as always, is scope. We wrote this project with our imaginations untethered by the practical concerns that now plague our attempts at actually filming the damn thing. A month's hard work was spent and lost in a failed attempt at producing a semi-functional Phauntleroy (Who knew underwater animatronics would be such a tough nut for an amateur to crack?). And while we're increasingly considering backing off, cutting characters, and re-scripting our project into something more do-able, we're not yet willing to give up the ghost. The principal boon of independent production is that we're largely free to stay true to our vision without worrying too much about how long it's gonna take. To keep it up with the puppet metaphors, we've been trying to make The Dark Crystal - a project that took 500 people 5 years to make - with less than the resources it took for Jim and Jane to knock together Sam and Friends.
The bottleneck is a chronic lack of hands and a lack of time. In light of this and to speed up the process, we're currently putting out feelers for like minded makers who might be able to help, as well as putting together a pitch document to try and drum up some interest among local art students, puppet troupes or some similarly weird-minded media organization with the manpower to get that first episode produced. The pitch document will outline the show at large, the characters in detail and feature episode summaries, new illustrations, posed puppet photos, lines of dialog and even a master plan for what the multi-season story arc would become in our wildest dreams. It'll be slick, engaging, informative and funny. And of course, we'll post it online for your viewing pleasure, to keep you salivating and sate your no doubt ravenous appetites just a little while longer.
We thank dearly you for your support and even more for your patience. We endeavor not to disappoint.
Yours in creative ambition at odds with all common sense,
The Frown Town Fools
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