Exclusive ‘New Moon’ trailer: Animated short film from Colman and Raul Domingo contends for Oscar [WATCH]

New Moon,” one of this year’s shortlisted films eligible for Best Animated Short at the Oscars, is the imaginative, surrealist journey of young Jay Jay and his mother Edie. Their inner city dreams are illuminated by the New Moon accompanied by the magic of Aretha Franklin playing on a summer’s eve on a transistor radio in their West Philadelphia backyard. Watch an exclusive new trailer above.

The short film has been adapted from Emmy winner Colman Domingo‘s play titled “A Boy and His Soul.” It is dedicated to Black mothers and sons and the love and inspiration that keeps them inspired through immeasurable hardships. In addition to writing the story, Colman voices each of the characters.

SEE Colman and Raul Domingo (‘New Moon’) on their Oscar shortlisted animated film: ‘The idea was to put love in this world’ [Exclusive Video Interview]

Colman’s husband and creative partner Raúl Domingo served as co-writer and co-director. They collaborated with animators Jérémie Balais and Jeff LeBars to bring this story to the screen. 

In a shared statement, Colman and Raúl expressed, “In the summer of 2020, during such upheaval around the world, we sought to build partnership with two strangers in Lyon, France who exhibited such heart and soul in their animated work. We began our work in earnest on line. Through Dropbox folders, video conferences, language barriers, hours of rotoscopy sessions directed and shot by Raúl, where ever Colman happened to be on the planet. We went down the rabbit hole of this peculiar yet satisfying journey of adapting a short piece of text into a full blown experience of animated storytelling while maintaining its origins of the theater. We had no idea what we were creating or how to really do it. We just knew that we found partners who wanted to put a beautiful message out into the world that is basically about the love of mothers, black boys, dreams and the power of Aretha Franklin. We are beyond thrilled to share New Moon with the world.” 

After completing several lauded performances in San Francisco, Off Broadway, London and Australia, Colman was asked many times to reprise his solo show “A Boy and His Soul” but he ultimately felt it needed to evolve from the stage. Raúl, Colman’s creative partner, suggested animating a portion of the show to illustrate a world in which vivid imagination lived and could be achieved. This was the beginning of a joyous two year collaboration with Jeff and Jérémie across continents at the start of the global pandemic. All work including rotoscope, ADR, etc has been done via Zoom, Dropbox and telecommunication without ever meeting in person. As of this date, they still haven’t. Jeff does not speak English, Raúl and Colman speak very little French, but the power of telling this short though this medium has bonded them with images, sound and passion. 

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