Set in the early 1950s, FISHEYE is inspired by the classic suspense thrillers of Alfred Hitchcock with an animated twist. The story is about the line between obsession and madness as an oddball writer is compelled to note down everything his neighbours do, no matter what.
Directed by Dane Winn
Music by Andrew Cottee
Sound Design by Matthew Footitt
The project began as a feature film concept about an author who seeks inspiration from his neighbours, but when normality isn't enough, he instigates a murder to thicken the plot. I decided to condense it down into a short film, which meant developing the script to allow for character development in a short amount of time and a story that was more about obsession than career ambition.
I spent the following year writing and evolving the script and the animatic, finally beginning production in December 2016. The schedule I set myself was a relatively quick one, six and a half minutes of animation in just five months. In part this was to hit certain festival deadlines, but more importantly it was to see if I could make the film economically and with a style that would be appropriate for the story but also efficient to produce, thus giving me more time to spend on script whilst still being able to output the film within a year.
The film was made using Maya and After Effects, I've been a big fan of Eran Hilleli's low poly aesthetic for a while now and that certainly helped inspire the style of the film. I thought that the jagged, edginess would be good for depicting warped characters and a certain anxiousness I wanted the audience to feel.
The project was an opportunity for me to try and tell more of a narrative than what I've done before and to practice traditional film grammar and cinematography with animation. Alfred Hitchcock often spoke about "pure cinema" and how you shoot a scene with action and reaction shots, as well as treating the camera like another actor in the scene looking around. I really wanted to bring that voyeuristic quality to this short and hopefully remind the audience just a little bit of those classic movies.