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So its the morning after the Oscars.  Just to get it out of the way, we obviously didn't come away with gold, but seriously had a great time nonetheless.  They always say that just being nominated is an honor, and its true.  This has been an amazing accomplishment for the artists that really made this movie.  Dean and I joined it in progress.  The world, characters, and sets were mostly finished, which allowed everyone to concentrate on the story.  To have gone from where we started and end up with an Oscar nomination was spectacular, and I really want everyone who worked on this movie to take that in.  I was so proud to be there, representing Dream Works.  

One thing I can never get over is the light in the film.  When they showed clips last night, it really stood out yet again.  These animated movies cross into another realm, I think.  Quite often, after a screening, people comment on how they didn't feel like they were watching an animated movie.  One of the interviewers on the carpet asked why these films have become so entertaining for an adult audience.  I said that I believe we've always worked to create stories and characters that will be entertaining to anyone of any age.  Beauty and the Beast, Lion King, Lilo and Stitch, Mulan....all of them.  But now the look of these films has caught up with the storytelling.  We've been so limited in the past with what we could do with the light and the camera.  Now don't get me wrong, those films I mentioned are, to me, perfect.  I wouldn't want to change a thing about them.  But they were designed to work with the limitations we lived with.  You couldn't truck-in to a character or move around them without a massive undertaking to change the perspective of the background.  And you couldn't put more than a few spots on a character (hyenas in Lion King) before you'd break the bank.  We couldn't put a graphic on Nani's shirt in Lilo and Stitch because there just wasn't enough time and money to track it.  It was possible - anything is - but we had to be wise with our resources.  A coffee cup on a shirt isn't going to change the way you feel about a character, so it isn't necessary.   Incidentally, at the end of Lilo and stitch, the artists put the coffee cup on Nani's shirt just once.   Do you know where?  

Those films were engineered to work with what was practical and available.  And I think they work great.  But with CG, we can adjust our expectations to include the sort of camera work and textures and light that you would expect to see in a live-action film.  We have many many more tools available to tell these stories, and the net effect is different.  More intense.  More immersive.

Anyway, I digress.  But I wanted to also say that I wished our category had had enough entries to have expanded to five nominees.  Despicable Me and Tangled should have been there with us as well.  The character animation in Tangled was a triumph - a new high ground in CG animation.  And from sheer brilliance in story telling, Despicable Me should get more recognition.  I have watched that movie ten times, and I watch it till the end every time.  That's what I go to the movies for.  A great journey, and a great story.  Well done.
  • Listening to: Survivor
  • Watching: My dog sleep
  • Eating: Nothing! Dang
  • Drinking: Nothing! Dang
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Deadbatter Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2012
You are a great and humble artist, and inspiration to so many. To be honest, this post alone, just reading it gave me a new "patience" with the 3D medium I felt I had already (literally months in) lost interest in. I am at sheridan doing animation, and I am such a traditional drawer and concept thinker that using maya just escapes me. But reading this made me stop, and realize I was looking at the program as a hindrance,rather then a new sketchbook of sorts that has a limitless possibility if I just give it my patience. We just watched dragon at school on the big screen,and seeing on that scale again also made me remember that the immediate thing that registered with me after watching that movie was the feeling of Hiccup and Toothless first "flight". The feeling of flying, or what it'd be like, just sunk in. You guys did an amazing job, I hope you know that, and that goes to everyone on the film as well.I can only hope and aspire to reach such a milestone.

back to bringing lines to life

Axelcat Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2011
Im gonna be on the lookout for Nani's shirt now! I wanna find that coffee cup! ha ha! Dispicable Me was absolutely fantastic! Totally agree!
ArtisinmyHeart Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
all I got to say out of all those I own how to train your dragon. I think it's the older people remembering what it was like to watch toy story.

I have a question I am creating a group called pitch support. for authors who are trying to pitch their ideas for both screen and books. I have to knowledge for books as a publisher but I need a
representative for film/animation/cartoon pitching.

Would you be interested or know anyone?
Splodyhead619 Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Excellent movie, I watch it with bated breath, every time. I am glad that you have not forgotten about Stitch in HTTYD, a special thank you. Did not receive an Oscar, it does not matter (remember the Lilo & Stitch). All ahead. Although Oscar is not the thing, just for the sake of which it is necessary to make films. Movies for people:)

I remember the cup on a T-shirt at the end of Lilo and Stitch!
Aveku-chan-Kataang Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2011
Man... HTTYD is the most amazing film ever. I mean, it made me cry, laugh, feel fuzzy inside and everything.. Geez... I don't understand why Toy Story 3 won the friggin Oscar.
But anyway, to me and load of people out there HTTYD was the best movie of 2010.
You are a great and talented artist and I admire you. :huggle:
Kellen-Jay-Mathers Featured By Owner Jun 14, 2011
How to Train Your Dragon is a spectacular movie which offers an experience for me no movie even rivals. The combination of music and characters make it amazing. It never fails to give me goosebumps starting as Toothless draws in the sand. Such an impact that scene alone held.

artsyfartsy1998 Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2011  Student General Artist
Wait, YOU did How to Train Your Dragon? That was THE best movie I've ever seen! Omigod! OMIGOD!
Veil1 Featured By Owner May 8, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Just watched How to train your dragon for about the 15th time since we got it. My kids love it, and easily my favorite out of all the DreamWorks stuff. Funny thing I almost forgot , but remembered while visiting your page, I did a little Stitch game a while back for Disney Online called Stitch's Blazing Lasers. High art it isn't, but it was a fun 2 or 3 week contract. And who wouldn't want to work on a Stitch game :) Love your stuff Chris.
oaketree Featured By Owner May 7, 2011
How to Train Your Dragon was amazing... awesome work! :D
Manx-Works Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2011
Actually saw Tangled yesterday for the first time. You were right the animation was incredible. Story wise it felt like the Little Mermaid meets Sinbad, typical Disney, not to much of surprise. I guessed what he was going to do with the hair, everyone guessed about what was going to happen afterward, the only real surprise was how she found out who she was, that I think they did a great job with. Good movie but still way down the list compared to HTTYD.
amblagar Featured By Owner Mar 28, 2011
you got honesty in your comments,
i loved the film, Dragon, cause it got something that dreamwork films do not have...
more spirit!
knighted-feline Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2011
BTW, I was completely torn between Toy Story 3 and How to Train Your Dragon. Both of you did brilliant work.
knighted-feline Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2011
I'd like to know why you don't consider MegaMind to be on the level of storytelling with the rest? I admit the animation wasn't to the level of Tangled, but the story I thought far out shined Tangled. Tangled did what so many Disney movies did and that's talk down to the audience. There was no real reason in Tangled for Rapunzel to develop as a character. I saw absolutely nothing in the Mother Gothel character that was more than an "Evil for Evil's sake" character and was extremely annoyed at the "Flynn/Eugene" name change issue. It was pointless. Now I'll admit the acting in Tangled was wonderful. The music was okay, but contrived in a lot of ways. Beyond animation and acting, what was good about that movie?
Foxi-Loxy Featured By Owner Mar 15, 2011  Professional General Artist
I couldnt agree with you more sir. Thats exactly what I go to the movies for too. I completely agree that storytelling skills have definently improved by alot.
DTJB Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Still a great movie as it deserves all the recognition it's received. Definitely need to watch this again.
Starlioness Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2011
yeah, I truly agree Tangled (which I haven't even seen yet) and Despicable should've been extended to nominations.. maybe next year... *shrugs*. ;)
CatchingKeys Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
I was really hoping How to Train Your Dragon could over take Pixar. I knew it had the potential but it had to go against something nominated for Best Picture even. I was bummed but ecstatic when it was at least nominated. I was really happy for John Powell too because the music is amazing. Noms are an acomplishment. Congrats! I think the win for me, if I had worked on that film, would be all the fans and appreciation of the film.

I agree Tangled and Despicable Me should have been there too. This was a great year for animation! :D
Wings-of-the-Heavens Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Congratulations on your oscar nominations! :-)
My little sister and I enjoyed HTTYD and loved it too.
Will you also be making movies of the rest of the book series?
Manx-Works Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2011
The story in How to train Your Dragon was head and shoulders above Toy Story, and I agree the other mention should of been Despicable Me, also fantastic!!! I has been amazing the advancement that CG has made, but im a bit old school, there is a certain warmth to hand drawn that I miss, to me it feels more crafted. For me it dose not matter about the CG or the special affects in a movie, all the flash in the world will never make up for a lack of story. And for me How to train Your Dragon has a place right at the top, right next to Miyazaki.

Keep up the fantastic work, cant wait to see whats next!!
Ryoseth-CP Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
well said Chris.
I was hoping you guys would get it, but once i saw that Toy Story also had a best feature nom,
i was dismayed.
the movie itself is spectacular, and you all did a superb job on it.
i love what you said about the animation and storytelling.

I truly thought Dreamworks would come away with it this year, HTTYD was the movie to do it. thus far.
i wish you all the best, and i can't wait to see your next film.
Liloexp626 Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011  Student Artist
"Incidentally, at the end of Lilo and stitch, the artists put the coffee cup on Nani's shirt just once. Do you know where?"

I'm pretty darn surprised no one noticed that xD It's the final sequence of Burning Love, where Stitch is taking all of the clothes to laundry, and then he pulls out a blue shirt with a coffee cup in it. For some reason, that image really stuck in my head ;P I thought it was meant to reflect Stitch's love for coffee.

And nowww...

Well, it was a triumph to be there. Even though HTTYD didn't win any of its nominations, people did recognize the amazing art job it represents, and the people behind it; further more, they were touched by it. That's something that really counts, and I'm sure you already know that by all of the nice encouraging comments you've all received.

I'm happy to see this "loss" (why does that word even appear here?) wasn't discouraging. I actually look forward to the day Dreamworks will win the recognition they deserve. They've worked hard for it, and this film was enough proof of it.

Enough of my rant, Chris xD Wish you all luck with Croods.
robins-egg-crayon Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011  Student General Artist
I personally think the Oscars can be blinded by popularity. HTTYD won multiple honors at the Annie Awards, including Best Animated Feature, and that is completely amazing! Congratulations to you guys for a job well done! We're supporting you all the way and we can't wait to see what you come up with next!
OctodogPhotography Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
The coffee cup's when Stitch is washing clothes, isn't it? :heart: It's a shame that HTTYD missed out on the Oscar but I think every film involved in the ceremony was really deserving. :) I loved reading your thoughts about films and storytelling too! I've almost finished a degree in Film Studies and I've just applied for a Masters degree course... and it's film makers like you that inspire me!
domalon Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011
You guys may not have won an oscar but I showed 'Dragon' in my Japanese Junior High school today and it got a spontaneous round of applause. Not an oscar but still pretty sweet!
AJ627 Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2011
Congratulations on your second nomination for an Oscar and i agree that despicable me and tangled should have been nominated. I hope next year they'll expand the nomination for animation.

BTW, how did you the sex joke with "how to train your dragon"
Night-Fury777 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hey Chris! Just want to say Congratulations again with your 9 awards I think that's how many 'Dragon' got! Nice seeing you there, always great to see a good friend at these events. You're awesome, last thing I'm going say... and, I love "How to Train Your Dragon", OK bye. :D:D
Doodlesthegreat Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011
Too bad you didn't win, but it was a hard choice this year. I agree that Tangled and Despicable Me should also have been nominated.

As for the soundtrack award, it should really have gone to Hans Zimmer for Inception, but they gave it to The Social Network as a consolation prize for losing Best Picture to The King's Speech. Politics.
betsybauer Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011  Professional Filmographer
Congrats on creating an amazing film, Chris. I thought you guys deserved the Oscar! I'm really disappointed with the amount of recognition that Dragons has been getting. It was by far my favorite animated film of last year. A future classic, for sure!

I can't wait to see what you and Dean do with Croods!
MadEye01 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011  Student
Congratulations for your nomination ! I would not have vote for Toy Story 3 (it was great, but not the greatest animated movie of the year, I think it's also to award all the saga).
Your film was great *w* Many animated movies were great this year, I hope we'll have a lot of years with so many great movies in the future !
I specially love the scene in the sky and in the narration, the scene between Hiccup (Harold in French (?)) and Toothless where they tame each other (just like Lilo and Stitch).

For the CG, I think it's good when it's well used, like in Dragons or Tangled, but it is not necessary everytime. I loved also The Illusionnist of Sylvain Chomet, 2D feets with the nostalgic feelings.
I hope producer could understand that CG doesn't mean success. It is good stories that means success, and artistic taste (I loves the watercolours background on Lilo and Stitch).
I'm for diversity in animation, and a lot of wonderful movies *o*

I don't know if you're working on a movie right now, but I hope you could achieve all what you want to do !

(I apologize if I make English mistakes, I'm not very good)
Salvador-Raga Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
I saw HTTYD in 3D and it was AWESOME!
damphyr Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
Grats for the nomination. :D I won't lie that I miss 2D a lot, most 3D isn't up to par... at all. I even think Toy Story is ugly and have never liked it because of that. :slow: But HTTYD was above and beyond one of the most amazing movies I've seen... in all respects.

Also: I was half a block from you while you were there. :slow:
studiotodorovic Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
How to Train Your Dragon was brilliant. I don't understand why there weren't more animations nominated though, like you mentioned.
betsybauer Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2011  Professional Filmographer
The number of nominations depends on how many films were eligible for the award. There weren't enough animated films put out last year to make it possible to nominate 5 films.
studiotodorovic Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
Ahh I see...
ForeignButterfly Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
I missed the oscars and it sucks that HTTYD didnt win. I love toy story but that movie was just awesome
jinnra Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
almost every yeah Disney (pixar) always some how gets the Oscar for that category i dont know how. most of those years the movies were well worth it to get that award (i luv.. Nemo, Wall-e, Up, Ratatouille, and The Incredibles they so deserve it) BUT NOT THIS TIME i was seriously rooting for 'How to Train Your Dragon' and i felt so (almost pissed)bummed when they gave it to toy story, yours had more weight to it and given the fact that Toy Story 1 and 2 it was like a continuing story with no real progress in the value of the story nothing new...same old toys with out a child...

after your category i went to sleep...i knew who was gonna win best supporting male, leading male, leading female and Picture so there was no point (the other thing I was hoping Inception got a few awards themselves...there was no chance in picture for them) feel as though Oscar has lost his weight....up here in Canada anyway....the hype was much less given all the stats and stuff they put up now really kills the anticipation.....

ANYWAY....i really really truly wish How To Train You Dragon won...congratulation on the Nomination as well...keep make amazing art and you have a fan no matter what....KUDOS
w4lker Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
You should have win. You told a story that was never told before.
rachelthegreat Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional Interface Designer
Umm, which one was yours? I've never heard you mention the title.
MagiKinchi Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
rachelthegreat Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional Interface Designer
Awesome, now I really must see that. Been meaning to!
MagiKinchi Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional General Artist
It's a truly wonderful film! One to get lost in. And as much as I love Pixar & Toy Story, Dragon deserved it this go-round, in my humble opinion. Enjoy the movie!
Nyoun Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
So proud Chris ! Wish you all the best with Croods. We're all very proud of Dragons and how it turned out. Honestly though.. I thought the soundtrack should have been graced with an Oscar too. cus the Music was breath taking.
DarylT Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Professional Filmographer
The fact there wasn't five nominations was a crime. Congratulations.
SummersBlossom Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I recently got accepted into bournmouth uni, about 98% go on to work for pixar and dreamworks. I cant wait
BearlyFeline Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Student Digital Artist
I adore Dream works and I agree, Tangled has such amazing and believable character animation. I have to say that two of my favourite characters are actually the King and Queen, even though they dont say a word in the film, they have some of the most powerful scenes in the film. Dream works has an amazing skill in making a wonderful scene with no dialogue at all and I hope that's something they continue doing because the audience really notices it.

Congrats on the nomination, you guys deserve more recognition for your brilliant work that keeps inspiring young artists out there.
MatchLight Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Student Digital Artist
Man I watched How To Train Your Dragon till the disc wore out. It was awesome to see it nominated. Animation blows my mind sometimes, all the work that goes into a film like that sometimes makes me forget the story marveling at the smallest details in the background.
Poonerpoob Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
Does this mean you'll never consider doing traditional animation in a film again?
Nightmare-Bug Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm very touched by what you said. It's no surprise to me that How to Train Your Dragon was there, I loved that to bits! Congratulations for the nomination to everyone involved in the making :love:
And it really is amazing how far animation has come, especially in the terms that animation is no longer just a "kids" movie, and my college friends and I enjoy a good time at the theaters watching Toy Story 3, Despicable Me, Tangled, etc. without feeling out of place one bit. The moral value you get from these great animations really adds to the story too. It's not a mindless cartoon that's on TV. It really gives something for people to think about after the movie ends.
I'm a die hard Pixar fan and a die hard Chris Sanders fan so I was pulling my hair out last night. It was bitter sweet.
xwolftriggerx Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2011  Student General Artist
It's nice to know that, even after your movie lost, you're still gracious about just being nominated, and even wishing for more to be up also. You truly are an inspiration

( but for what it's worth, I thought HTTYD should've won)
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