Category Archives: self-reference

July/August festival update

We received our first official film festival rejection letter this morning via email. It was kind and gracious and encouraging, and beautifully written. I was so touched by the letter, in fact, that I wrote back with a quick note thanking them for the courtesy of letting us know.* I wasn’t expecting a response, it just felt like the right thing to do. Minutes later, I got an answer back from the festival director. They had sent me the wrong letter by mistake. Our film was accepted after all!

That festival was the Nevada City Film Festival, where How to Make a Baby will play in late August. Over the next two months it’ll also screen in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, and New York City. It looks like the festival organizers have put together some amazing programs, so if you live near any of those cities, I highly recommend checking them out in person. You can click the images above for the dates and details, and as always, see our festivals page for the whole list of events.

*Many festivals don’t bother to inform filmmakers that their films have been rejected: you have to wait ’til they release the list of accepted films, and then search for your film in the list, a rather heartbreaking process if you were hoping to get in and didn’t!

Vote for us in the DFF Audience Choice Award!

Hey “How to Make a Baby” fans: remember that super cool film festival we were in last month? Well, they’ve opened up their competitive shorts program to voting by the public. If you liked our film, please:


If you can see the embedded video above, just click the little heart to let them know you “like” the film. Also, one voter selected at random will win something called a “DFF Survival Kit”. (Personally, I didn’t find DFF particularly hard to survive, but I’m sure it’s a very cool kit, whatever it is!) Voting closes May 31st.

What a great show!

Disposable Film Festival

Originally uploaded by otherthings

The Disposable Film Fest opening night was a fantastic show. From the very start you could tell that the curators had great taste. Every film had something unique about it: an inspiring use of cheap technology, a fresh visual idea, or just a really funny story. I found myself grinning and bouncing through most of the show. And it was wonderful to see our short film with a live audience, because it got an amazing reaction. (When even the title card got a laugh, I could tell that the crowd was ready to have some fun!) And the organizers couldn’t have been nicer people, with a fun, lighthearted approach to things that was reflected in every aspect of the event (like the message projected above before the show began). Here’s a small collection of some of my favorite films from the opening night event.

The festival is continuing throughout this weekend, with more short films and even features. I highly recommend checking it out!

See us on the big screen, if you’re so disposed.


Good news: our short film, How to Make a Baby, is heading for the silver screen! It will be in the competitive shorts program at the wonderfully named Disposable Film Festival. The big event is Thursday, March 4th at 8pm at San Francisco’s Roxie Theater. Sure, you’ve seen it on the internet. But the Roxie’s screen is, like, a million feet wide! How big is your screen? You can buy tickets in advance if you like, and there’s a party next door after the screening. Come hang out with us and all the other disposables!

Inadvertent data art


I’m fascinated by the way our viral video has been spreading around the web. It’s a very chaotic process. One day it’ll get a few hundred views, and the next day 60,000. gives some very basic statistics, but it doesn’t really tell the story of how the clip’s popularity spreads from one community to another. So I’ve started using Processing to try to visualize it. Processing is really easy to learn to use, but certain commands, like bezierVertex(), have slightly less-than-intuitive arguments. The image above was the result of one of several failed attempts to understand that particular function.

So that’s how babby is formed!

Looks like our How to Make a Baby video has gone viral. It’s been on Boing Boing, Neatorama, Geekologie, Cartoon Brew,, and about a zillion other blogs. In the mainstream media, it’s been on Canal Plus, Metro (UK), Epoca, Glamour, and ESPN of all places.

As of today, our original video has been watched over 400,000 times. (I’m still trying to figure out how much popcorn that would mean if all those people had to go see it in a movie theater.) Meanwhile, an unofficial copy on YouTube has garnered another quarter of a million views (although for some reason my “official” YouTube copy has a scant 10,000… go figure!) And I guess the lack of dialog gives the short some kind of global appeal, because it’s been blogged in Catalan, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, and Turkish. Whew!

Here are some of the best comments I’ve seen so far (in English, anyway…)

“The pope was right – condoms ARE useless. Rubber gloves, however!”

“Excellent! I played it for my 5 year old daughter and her 5 year old cousin before they left for school. I’m sure it’ll make for an interesting day for their teachers :)”

“Scientifically inaccurate – fails to show the crucial contribution made by the stork.”

“Now that is dedication! I’m watching this on the set of a stop-motion film, and it certainly puts our long waiting times between takes into perspective.”

“Adoption is much easier and less stressful on the lungs/stomach.”

“That is exactly how my wife and I did it. By the way, NEVER blow on two fingers at once. Yep … twins!”

“My girlfriend is inflatable, too. God, I’m so lonely.”

A major milestone


Looks like they’ve gotten started on marketing for the movie I’m working on. And they’re using some of my animation in a bunch of the promo materials. This is it, man, I’ve made the big time! Forget about feature films. Projected celluloid is so old-media. Animated GIFs are where it’s at! I won’t hurt your eyes by posting ’em on the front page though. Click below for the full effect.

Continue reading A major milestone