Blog: News & Views

Oscar nominee John Kahrs on being frontrunner for animated short 'Paperman'

By Zach Laws
By Zach Laws
Feb 16 2013 03:21 am
0
Comments

Oscars Academy Awards animated short Paperman John Kahrs film news entertainment 13579086

John Kahrs, director of the Oscar-nominated Animated ShortPaperman,” credits his years at Pixar as the perfect training ground to becoming a director.

“I was working on 'Toy Story 2' (1999), watching Lee Unkrich, who was an editor at the time, cutting it together,” says Kahrs. “His focus on cutting, composition, and precision was like a film school class. I learned how something that started from such humble beginnings could become something so special.”

“Paperman” tells the story of two people who have a chance encounter in New York City, and how paper airplanes lead to their falling in love. “It goes back to when I lived in New York and was surrounded by people but was also so alone,” explains the director. “Sometimes you’d make a random connection and wonder what the rest of your life would be like with this person. I thought, what if two people met and were a formidable couple? What would bring them back together again?”

When Kahrs brought the idea to Disney and Pixar chief John Lasseter, it took some convincing to get the film made. “John always asks the question, is the world you’re creating immersive, and are you involved in that world? Or are you distracted by the technology? Once he saw that the world was indeed immersive and not distracting, he gave us the go-ahead.”

Kahrs' perserverance paid off as he is predicted to prevail with his first Oscar bid. Twelve of our experts, four of our editors and 80% of our users expect "Paperman" to win. All of that support translates to leading odd of 9 to 5, well ahead of "Adam and Dog," which is at 7/2. 

"Paperman" makes use of both traditional hand-drawn animation and computer animation. “We were combining 2D and 3D in a way not seen before. With 3D, you get fluid motion and more subtle moves; with 2D, you get a very expressive line, and you can feel the hand of the artist. It’s inevitable that computers will be used in animation, the way digital tools have invaded filmmaking, but the drawn line is still something that can tell a story and be expressive.”

Kahrs looked at many pre-war black-and-white photographs of New York for visual inspiration. “There was the visual hook of those canyon-like spaces between skyscrapers,” explains Kahr. “I wanted to capture that for the film.”

As well, Kahrs drew influence from several filmmakers, particularly Frank Capra and the team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. “What I loved about the films of Capra and Powell and Pressburger was that while their films take place in the real world, there’s this mystical quality about it.” Kahrs also drew upon Billy Wilder’s Academy Award-winning film “The Apartment” (1960), a similar story of two lonely souls making a connection in New York.

Kahrs got his start working at Blue Sky before moving to Pixar in 1997, where he served as an animator on “A Bug’s Life” (1998), “Toy Story 2” (1999), “Monsters, Inc.” (2001), “The Incredibles” (2004), and “Ratatouille” (2007). With “Paperman,” he takes the directing chair for the first time and is likely to take home an Oscar for his efforts. 

 
Related News
Follow Gold Derby
Click Here

Advertisement

Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

Hot Links from the Web
Inside Track: Emmy Voting

EXCLUSIVE: See the episodes
submitted to Emmy judges
by actors and TV series

Every actor submits only one sample episode, which will be judged by other actors (ranging from 25 to 75 per category jury) between July 28 and August 14. TV series submit six, which will be split into three pairs to be distributed randomly to about 300 voters. We now have uncovered every single title submitted for the 2014 races. CLICK HERE FOR THE EPISODES

We analyze the pros and cons
of episodes submitted by actors
to Emmy judges

Who submitted well? Click links below to read our in-depth analysis of each actor's episode entry. 

DRAMA GUEST ACTOR
Dylan Baker ("The Good Wife")
Beau Bridges ("Masters of Sex")
Reg E. Cathey ("House of Cards")
Paul Giamatti ("Downton Abbey") 
R
obert Morse ("Mad Men")
Joe Morton ("Scandal")


DRAMA GUEST ACTRESS
Kate Burton ("Scandal")
Jane Fonda ("The Newsroom")
Allison Janney ("Masters of Sex")
Kate Mara ("House of Cards")
Margo Martindale ("The Americans")
Diana Rigg ("Game of Thrones")
 

COMEDY GUEST ACTOR
Steve Buscemi ("Portlandia")
Louis C.K. ("SNL")
Gary Cole ("Veep")
Jimmy Fallon ("SNL")
Nathan Lane ("Modern Family")
Bob Newhart ("The Big Bang Theory")
 

COMEDY GUEST ACTRESS
Uzo Aduba ("OITNB")
Laverne Cox ("OITNB")
Joan Cusack ("Shameless")
Tina Fey ("SNL")
Melissa McCarthy ("SNL")
Natasha Lyonne ("OITNB")

 

Photo Galleries: Oscars, Emmys, ...
Emmy Nominees: Video Interviews
Subscribe to our free news service

Advertisement