This is a fictional story about the future of companionship between human and inanimate. It tells the story of a plush Inanimate , with a soul from a baby lion, who craves the new science and technologies of synthetic DNA, artificial intelligence and teleportation, to be an enabled companion, and its soul quantum entangled with its human partner, for eternity.
Fantasy of Companionship Between Human and Inanimate is directed by Susan Lim, Samudra Kajal Saikia, Christina Teenz Tan. It was our pleasure to interview them and together they have kindly answered the questions for LA Indies.
What was the inspiration behind the making of your film?
This short animation is based on ALAN the Musical, a staged musical currently in development. This sci-fi story is about the future of companionship and the way in which humans and artificially intelligent lifeforms (called inanimates) will interact in the future. We decided to make an animated short as stage musicals have been limited in these challenging times. In the musical at large, we will explore not only the novel relationships humans and inanimates will share in the future, but also the complex dynamics of human relationships which are explored in this song in particular.
What is the most challenging aspect of working in this particular genre?
This is the first time we have worked in animation! We have backgrounds in medicine, neuroscience and musical theatre so this was a whole new challenge for us. While we composed the music and lyrics, we had no experience in animation. Luckily, we had an incredible team led by Samudra Kajal Saikia who produced this beautiful work.
When did you realize that you wanted to work in media and make films
and what was the first film project that you created as a director?
This piece was originally part of a staged musical but given the virtual era we are now living in we wanted to dip our toes into the animation world. This is actually the very first project we have created as directors and we couldn't be more thrilled with the incredibly warm reception we have received.
How did you choose the cast and the crew of the film and what was the most challenging aspect of production?
We chose Samudra Kajal Saikia, an incredibly talented animator from India as we had worked with him before on some promotional pieces for our musical. In regards to the music itself we had an amazing team from France consisting of our musical director and arranger Matt Eymard. We were fortunate enough to have recorded the music at the prestigious Abbey Road Studios in London! Of course, it was a challenge coordinating this whole team in a purely virtual setting but everyone’s hard work paid off in the end!
What genre of filmmaking fascinates you as a director and which genres do
you prefer to work on?
We love animation as it gives us the creativity to explore some of the sci-fi themes in our work. We believe that scientific discovery and having a vivid imagination go hand in hand. There is no better way to tap into our scientific consciousness than through this medium!
How can cinema change the world and have an impact on society?
We feel that cinema can bring bold new ideas to the fore. We hope to start a global conversation about the future of AI. These discussions about the future of synthetic life are not purely the realm of scientific labs but should be discussed in the artistic community as well. The integration of AI into our life will change the emotional landscape of human beings forever and this must be explored through the arts. Cinema and music can help to foster this discussion and help the world understand the way in which our society will evolve.
What is your next film project as a director?
A fantastic short animated film titled "Cosmic Rhapsody".