Short film series goes to Hollywood, raises awareness of disadvantage kids

04 June, 2014 by

A series of short animated films is helping raise awareness of disadvantaged children in Australia.

Film marketing agency The Solid State teamed up with not-for-profit charity The Smith Family to create 'Tales of the One in Ten'- a series of short animated projects that tells real-life stories of children who come through the charity’s doors.

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The Solid State company director Danny Lachevre says it was after years of working with The Smith Family and hearing these eye-opening stories that prompted the series into development.

“Last year [The Smith Family] came to us and wanted to do something a little bit different with their Winter Appeal, but they didn’t know what,” he tells IF. “We had read so many of these case studies that they had been sending us, these quite sad but beautiful tales of kids going through difficult circumstances and coming out the other side. Everyone gets teary in those meetings, hearing about these little kids who have to go through so much.

“So we said ‘You should do something with these stories.’ But because they are real stories about the kids you can’t go out and film them, the last thing you want to do is flag these kids as the ones had gone through this hardship. So we thought we would create them in animation – that way we can change the names but retain the truth.”

The first film of the series, Alice & The Giant Emptiness, told the tale of a young girl who struggles to overcome a negative self-image to realise a life of possibility.

The second film, David & the Big Heavy, follows the true story of a young immigrant boy who struggles to cope with a myriad of issues at home and school as his family adjusts to life in a new country.

The Solid State has been promoting the works with social campaigns, a specialised website and has even developed an educational study guide for schools in order to “get that message get out there within the classroom as well.”

They have already been for their work, nabbing a Golden Trailer award for Alice & The Giant Emptiness and having the same film screened at a Hollywood short film festival.

“It’s great that it’s had this impact. It’s popped up in all sorts of places,” says Lachevre.

The Solid State currently has four of these films on its slate, with the opportunity to turn it into an ongoing exercise.

The ABC has also shown interest in making a series at the end of the year. 

Watch David & the Big Heavy here

 

 

 

 

 

 

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