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Sundance to Premier Brothers McLeod latest Film Marfa

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The Sundance Film Festival will feature the World Premiere of the new short lm by BAFTA Award winning animators The Brothers McLeod.

Marfa the new short film by The Brother McLeod will receive its World Premiere at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. Founded in 1969 the fest is the largest independent film festival in the United States.

Marfa is an 8 minute animated film about a small and isolated West Texas city in the high desert of the Trans-Pecos.

The Brothers McLeod explain,

‘Marfa is a town on the borderlands of Texas and a place out of time. It takes its name from a novel – possibly Dostoevsky, possibly Jules Verne. It’s famous for the famous people who’ve passed through, including James Dean, on location for his last lm. But there’s much more to it than that. Strange lights dance in the night sky over the desert. It is also, implausibly, a mecca for lovers of minimalist art. It’s a landscape of lost horses, freaks and food trucks … and then there’s also a giant lemon.’

It’s three years since Greg visited Marfa, Texas for the Marfa Film Festival. It was an epic journey. He left the sanctuary of Stratford-upon-Avon, England, took the train to London, and flew out on a Dreamliner to Austin, Texas. But Texas is a big place and Marfa is famous for being near … well near nothing. This journey and the destination are the basis of The Brothers McLeod’s new short film.

This Film is about the anecdotal experience of being in a new and unexpected place. A place is more than just the physical place – the buildings. It’s the people who live there now and who put it together. It’s the tiny, crazy moments that you witness (like an old man dodging a train). It’s the stories that people tell you about the town (and wider America). It’s the food you eat. The drink you drink. The heat you feel. The sound the train makes or the cop car makes. This adds up to a character. The place is the character.

Back home, after the trip, Greg worked with Myles on taking his raw materials – photos, audio snippets, interviews, video footage – and turning it into a film. Myles wrote a poem to act as a story spine while Greg experimented with different visual styles. Thanks to Greg’s ongoing myinkyhead project (check it out on Instagram) they settled on an ink and watercolour style. The style is loose and alive. There is a lot of black and white, but also moments of colour (watercolour and ink)..

The Brothers McLeod also worked with long term collaborator and sound designer Tom Angell. The project was partly funded by a Kickstarter campaign. The contributors were able to follow the development of the project through a variety of styles, which The Brothers McLeod have now shared on their blog site.

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