Robin Joseph Interview: ‘Fox and the Whale’
During our recent webcam chat (watch the exclusive video above), director Robin Joseph reveals the idea for his animated short “Fox and the Whale” came from “wanting to do something about curiosity. A lot of my interest is in science and space exploration, that drive of trying to look for something that is so on the fringes, but still pursuing [it].” The film centers on an inquisitive fox who goes in search on an elusive whale, in a journey of vast and unending longing.
Joseph views this simple story as a metaphor for his idea of greater exploration. “The whale itself is sort of an abstraction,” he explains. For his protagonist, “there was something great in that contrast of something so small and fragile like a fox looking for something much bigger, like a whale.” He began with just the title, and, he adds, “the play of those two characters always appealed to me.”
Joseph has worked on such films as “Horton Hears a Who!” (2008), “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” (2009), “Despicable Me” (2010), “Rio” (2011), “The Lorax” (2012), “Mr. Peabody and Sherman” (2014), “Inside Out” (2015), and “The Secret Life of Pets” (2016). This is his directorial debut.
“Fox and the Whale” was recently shortlisted for the 2018 Academy Awards. The film competes at the Oscars against “Cradle,” “Dear Basketball,” “Garden Party,” “In a Heartbeat,” “Life Smartphone,” “Lost Property Office,” “Lou,” “Negative Space,” and “Revolting Rhymes.” The film has won prizes at the Fastnet, Oxford (Mississippi), and SENE festivals.