Red Sea International Film Festival 2022 Animated Intro 
After the great success we achieved at the Red Sea Film Festival Intro 2021. Our client decided to return and ask for another intro for 2022. We presented this quick pitch to the Client. We highlighted to them how the audience and Media reacted positively to this marvelous achievement. We also presented the new idea we have in mind for 2022. 
The Pitch
The idea this time was en evolution of the previous one. In 2021 the idea was around a girl who follows her passion by trying to capture a bird through her lens. The whole environment around her at first presents obstacles, but then and with her determination the place of old Jeddah changes positively to help her achieve that goal. The idea was an introduction to the idea of following passions and succeeding in actualizing them at the first ever International Film Festival in Saudi Arabia. In 2022, festivals and saudis participating in them is already a fact. But now.. we are distracted by our phones. However annual film festivals are a chance for us to escape from banality, and from the identity shattering distractions phones cause us. 
Pre-Production Pitch
These were the first ideas and concepts we presented in the pitch to the Festival. Following that we worked on the storyboards and concept sketches. We presented to the Festival a second pitch. We called this our Production Bible. 
The same bird that was once small in the first Intro we made in 2021, would now return as a savior from falling into the abyss of Technologic distraction, and towards the beauty found in long form viewing in Films. This Phoenix like bird will shatter that wasteland and take our beloved girl to the beautiful city of Jeddah, where the Festival moved next to the beach instead of the old town.
Early layout sketches and ideas while doing research
The final storyboard with the idea in its final format
early style and color explorations that fit with the festival and its identity
The Phone spiral towards the abyss of technologic distraction
More concepts illustrations showcasing important moments in the story
First explorations of the Main character
More refined style references 
Designing and Drawing the Environments needed a lot of research. I wanted the first scene at the cafe to feel really warm and wholesome. I visited a nice bakery in Jeddah that really gave me those good feelings every time I went there. Bread Ahead was its name, and it won many awards in Jeddah as top Bakery in the city. I loved how it felt like an old train station. With the green metal work, the brick work, and the blending of wooden, golden, and ceramic textures. It had a grunt feel to it, but also modern and smelled like croissants. The idea was that our main character would be on her phone in this first shot, even though she's surrounded by a lovely bakery full of flowers and other eye catching stuff. I wanted to capture that contrast as much as possible. 
Environment Studies 
Yassmine Salem, conducted these studies of the bakery. She drew multiple sketches of the location, and of all the important props at the place. 
The Tech World, Tech Wasteland, and The Phoenix Speed Lines
Storyboard Sketches
Initial Story sketches, and explorations
First Thumbnails for the story
First Animatic
Color Script 
The Music
It was beyond important that the music would reflect a dreamy yet melancholic vibe. The threat of technology but the perseverance of the human spirit nonetheless. I found this in the music of a great classic Anime I grew up watching. Galaxy Express 999 had a very beautiful soundtrack that resembled magically. It was a miracle for me finding this music. It guided the spirit of this project. We would listen to this music daily in all its different variations. The techno version had great synth in it, and the original instrumental version had a great funky orchestral opera-like sensation to it that just gave so much power to the piece. Yes. This was the main source of inspiration for me and the whole team working. 
The techno version of the song used very beautiful synth as a subtitute for the vocals and that was remarkable. I gave this as a reference to the composers who worked really hard to mimic it. The melody especially had a nostalgic essence to it, a longing for a beautiful past, a past of simplicity against the overbearing burden of technology on the human soul. I tried to make our music mimic this essence. However I do not believe I succeeded at the end. The composer did not quite get to that essence, and he faced lots of technical issues. We needed better musicians on the job who had a lot more experience. Abdulmalik was awesome but the task at hand was way bigger and more complicated than anticipated. 
Early Concept Art by Raghad Baidas
Sketch Guides for Tech world Props by the Director
Early Layout Background Sketches by Rahma following the storyboards
Character Design & Guides & References
Final Character Design by Hadi Abo Kassem
Final bird Character work by Yassmine Salem
The Phone Spiral and its Screens
First final Background attempts by Raghad Baidas 
Background Enhancement Comments
The Final Backgrounds
After Raghad created the great base she sent us early on, Yassmine Salem took over and pushed the backgrounds to another level. Her touch was amazing and with my comments she managed to make everything look amazing on the big screen. The shot with the bird flying over Jeddah especially was breathtaking when seen in Theatres. Everything was extra beautiful and mesmerizing.  
Movement Guide for the Glass break scene 
First test for the falling through the glass scene done by the great Husam Hamed
Character Animation
This is one of the most animation heavy projects I worked on. We had a limited number of animators, but the animations themselves were complex. Many of the shots were lost and redone multiple times. Yousef albagshi went through nightmares with crashes and redoes. I gave lots of comments regarding the fall into the phone spiral especially. Bader Nazer, Riyad al-dossari and Yousef did a great job. Riyad handled all the close ups of the girl. His attention to emotions and details was amazing. Youssef handled the falling shots for the girl, and one of the far away shots of the girl overlooking the city. While Bader handled the shots that involved the bird flying with extreme speed and landing on the car top in the beginning. Let's not forget Alex who finalized and cleaned up most of the Animation work. 
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