Frog Bar is a stop-motion short film about frogs in a bar. When a busboy falls for a beautiful girl, chaos and hilarity ensue.
Frog Bar is about a Frog Bus Boy working at a Bar occupied by Frog Patrons. Two of these patrons are Mob Bosses, escorted by their henchmen. One Mob Boss has a beautiful frog girl with him (known as "the Mol"). When the Bus Boy sees the Mol, he instantly falls for her and whisks her out onto the dance floor.
However, the bracelet she's wearing is meant to be used as payment for an exchange that the Mob Bosses are orchestrating. Being whisked away means that her previous date no longer has payment, so he sends his henchmen after her.
Hilarity ensues as the Henchmen are thwarted and the bar turns into a mix of choreographed dance and complete and utter destruction.
THE FILM'S CONCEPTION
When Nick Walker and Andy Wood were sitting in Nick's truck, jumping from shoot to shoot for Nick's independent film, "George Biddle, CPA", the Red Elvises' "Scorchi Chornie" came on the radio. Nick had been plotting an idea for this song for years, and explained it to Andy. Andy, after returning to school, continually searched for ways to execute "Frog Bar". When Andy ran into Beth Sousa, the Undergraduate Director of 2D Animation at the Academy of Art University, everything clicked together. Beth was searching for a large stop-motion project to work on, and Nick had a story that would work brilliantly in stop-motion. Andy set up a meeting with Nick and Beth and thus Frog Bar became a stop-motion animated collaborative project at the Academy of Art University.
THE EXECUTION & FUNDING
Up to this point in the production, we’ve been working at the Academy of Art University. This project is run by students, and all of our key roles, save Beth’s and Nick’s, are staffed by students. With supervision from Academy of Art University Faculty, we have made it through a substantial chunk of preproduction and are at the beginning stages of our fabrication process.
However, we as students don’t typically have the money sitting around needed to complete a project of this size and caliber. Up to this point, it has been funded by a few core members of the team. However, we’re nearing the point where materials become a major asset to this project, and those materials cost a rather large chunk of cash.
40% will go to puppet fabrication materials - this includes armature parts and equipment to create the skeletal structure of the puppets, sculpting materials to create the characters, material to make molds of the said characters, and the cost to make castes of the puppets with the armature inside.
Another 20% will go towards set and prop fabrication and construction costs - While we’ve started construction with scraps (Part of our base structure is made out of pallets from a certain, unnamed VFX house in the Bay Area), we need supplies to build the stage and decorate it, as well as paint and color everything.
20% of the budget will go towards 3D printing - This is mostly for our lead singer, who will be utilizing replacement animation as he sings “Scorchi Chornie”, and several of the more complicated props that need to be hyper-detailed. We’ve been in talks with several 3D printing companies, offering a variety of resources.
10% will go towards shooting equipment materials - While much of our gear has already been provided for us, we still need to rent lenses for our cameras (We’re shooting on Canon EOS technology), and create a motion-controlled camera and camera rig.
The final 10% will go towards festival entries, distribution of the film and the rewards that backers will be receiving.
FROG BAR LEADERSHIP
DIRECTOR / EXECUTIVE PRODUCER
Nick Walker was born and raised on a small farm in the central valley. After engineering school, he took a left turn into computer animation and stumbled into a job at PDI/DreamWorks just in time to work on Antz, the first three Shrek films, and the first Madagascar. Since then he's moved on to Industrial Light + Magic, working on films like Rango, Avengers, and now Pacific Rim. Nick recently finished post-production on his first independent live action feature (George Biddle, CPA), which is now starting to take on the festival circuit.
ANIMATION DIRECTOR / ART DIRECTOR / EXECUTIVE PRODUCER
Beth Sousa has been teaching at the Academy of Art University since 2003. She started her career as a professional artist in 1978. Beth double majored in Painting and Metalsmithing at the University of Houston where she also studied animation. In 1986 she joined the IEEE's Special Interest Group on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques (SIGGraph). Beth continued her art studies as a student of Communication Design at Texas Tech University, after which she briefly pursued a graphic design career. In 1988, while a Junior Designer with American Film Technology, she moved to their Film R&D department, where her career in animation began in earnest. Her work has been seen nationally in television commercials, children's programs, and in games. She has created work for ABC, Fox, NBC, Paramount, Virgin, Maxis and Disney.
Beth is the Animation Department's Director of Undergraduate 2D Animation. She specializes in teaching Stop-Motion and Experimental Animation. In addition to teaching Full Time at the Academy of Art University, she also works on her own art and animation projects in her San Francisco studio.
Andy Wood is a student at the Academy of Art University's Animation and Visual Effects Department, focusing in Animation Production. He has been producing short films, both animated and live action, for over six years. Recently, Andy worked with the San Francisco Giants Community Fund, producing a short animated promotional piece, and was the VFX Production Manager for Advantageous, a short film produced for the FutureStates web-series.
Before entering the production universe, Andy worked at the Spokane Hoopfest Association, assisting in organizing and executing the Largest 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament on the face of the earth, engulfing 45 blocks of downtown Spokane, WA with over 150,000 people.
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