The 2021 Tribeca Film Festival featured the premiere of Blush, which is an animated short film by Apple TV and SkyDance Animation Studios. The famous animation guru, John Lasseter, is the Creative Head of SkyDance Animation. He is also the executive producer of Blush. Lasseter is a two-time Academy Award-winning animator, producer, and director of several animated feature films. Blush is directed by Joe Mateo and produced by Health Schmidt. The other executive producers of the Blush are Dana Goldberg and David Ellison.
Blush is about the journey of a stranded astronaut on a desolate dwarf planet. The astronaut ends on the planet after his spaceship collides with an asteroid. After the crash, the astronaut has no way to contact Earth and must find a way to survive on the seemingly inhospitable planet. The astronaut is also a horticulturist, allowing him to plant a tree for oxygen but as the oxygen runs out, he struggles to survive. In a stroke of luck, another spaceship crashes nearby and from it emerges a cute female alien. To survive on the planet, they help each other and during this journey, they start to fall in love.
With a run-time of only 11 minutes, Blush can deliver a strong message of hope and love for the viewers. The short film highlights the joy of building a new life. The concept of Blush was inspired by the life of Mary Ann, the late wife of the director Joe Mateo. Mary Ann passed away in 2017 after a long fight with cancer. Joe Mateo had an extremely difficult time coming to terms with loss and often felt “out of air” due to anxiety. This “out of air” feeling is similar to what the stranded astronaut in Blush would feel without oxygen on the desolated planet.
There are no cast members in Blush as there is no dialogue. The only communication between the characters is through facial expressions and sign language. The release date of Blush has not been announced yet. It joins several highly anticipated animated films and tv shows by the Apple-SkyDance partnership. This includes The Search of WondLa, Spellbound, and Luck.
Multi-Year Partnership Between Apple TV and SkyDance Animation
In 2016, Apple started to produce and distribute its original content, and in 2019, it announced its streaming service named Apple TV+. This service is offered in over 100 countries through the Apple TV app. Apple TV has already won close to 300 nominations and 100 awards for its original content. As part of expanding its original content in the animation space, Apple signed a multi-year contract with SkyDance Animation Studios. Animated feature films Luck and Spellbound are set to be released in 2022, while several other projects are expected to be announced.
About John Lasseter
Born and raised in Hollywood, CA, John Lasseter is recognized as the creative guru behind the success of Pixar and Disney animations studios. He worked as the Chief Creative Officer for both studios. In his extensive career as an animator, producer, and director of animated content, Lasseter has delivered iconic animated feature films including Toy Story, Cars, A Bug’s Life, The Incredibles, and more. Lasseter now leads SkyDance Animation Studios as the Creative Head. He is in charge of creative direction and strategy for the studio. SkyDance Animation is the animation division of SkyDance Media, based out of Santa Monica, CA. Lasseter is known as the pioneer of using CGT (computer graphics technology) in animated films. One of his Oscar awards was a Special Achievement Award for Toy Story, which is the first film to use CGT for the entire animation.
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