Arthur Christmas – Story, Animation & Acting Tips


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Let’s take a look at Arthur Christmas and see what we can learn from this unique and clever film – from clear action sequences and tight story structure, to small acting details that took this film above and beyond our initial expectations.

Lessons to learn from Arthur Christmas:
00:53 Using holds in Action Scenes
02:24 Contrasts – fast vs slow
03:01 Characters – clear attitudes
04:19 Crossing Story Thresholds in the Hero’s Journey
08:38 Starting a film with the theme
09:48 End Scenes with surprises, go the extra mile!
11:44 Symbols in the background
13:06 Use acting reference
14:25 Don’t be afraid of jokes for adults
15:10 Make sure the staging is clear

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Vicho Friedli

Hi! Thank you so much for making this video. Most of the times I watch movies I get caught up in the story and don’t analyze much. So this helps to remind me of paying attention to these kind of things the next time I watch a movie and helps to see things I didn’t notice (I totally missed the painting in the dining room for example).

One thing that called my attention when I watched the movie was the walk/run when Arthur goes yelling that they missed a child. Walks are already very hard to animate, and this walk had the added difficulty of having the feet slip on the floor. I keep thinking that the animator must have used reference and would love to see that reference XD … I think it must have been even hard to record the reference because you can’t just fake slipping.

Thanks again for the video! Looking forward to seeing more of these!