Thursday, 23 September 2010

Zombelina.....beware of cheap imitations

Its all gone very Roman recently.....

It started last week with director Carl offering to buy the film rights to Zombelina to get the project moving and asking me to give a price...which I did, and in the great scheme of things - it wasn't even a lot of money, just enough to make it all worth my while.

While he cogitated over the amount, I contacted the actor Steve Garry, who narrated the story to see if I could use the recording and put an atmospheric dance track beneath it.   or click the widget.

In this multi platform world any additional means of promoting  Zombelina and the people involved can only be a good thing. wrong was I?

It seems that the offer to buy the film right was a smoke screen and all along a duplicate screenplay was about to be commissioned by the same director under the really catchy and original name  Zombelline,

Even the fan page which had been set up for Zombelina, had been changed to Zombelline ... now I may be jumping to conclusions here especially as I haven't seen the new story yet or been privvy to any of the plot, but I wouldn't be surprised if it features and old man, a young girl - (who becomes Zombified in some way) and an old haggard witch. 

Dont get me wrong, this blog isn't to gripe about not getting my way - but it is to follow the development of Zombelina, which started out almost 8 months ago now, and after the initial push not much else has happened....

So the future of the project looks a bit wobbly today with the possibility of the artwork disappearing along with the artist and if the animator goes as well then we are probably looking at a different format altogether...

What the events of the last few days have proved though, is that if people are willing to resort to foul means to get their hands on the script and even in some cases threatened violence...( I kid you not) then it must mean that we definitely have something here....imitation is the greatest form of flattery after all.

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Call for volunteers.....

So we loaded the talent cannon last April and shot off our mouths about the impending super stop animated short " Zombelina", it all seemed so easy...especially for me as my bit was already basically done and all I needed to do ws wait for Carl, James and Kim to come up with their bits.

But writing a story and bringing it to life are on seperate planets, and with each person also needing to keep their fridges filled, Zombelina has been put on the back burner for the time being...while we concentrate on our own individual projects.

That was until last week when the proposed site for Zombie Aid 3 ( Sports City) was declared unready, forcing the event to be cancelled altogether. There are still plans to put on a Zombie Music Fest with the same line up, but the location still hasn't been announced yet.

And so our thoughts turn back to Zombelina and turning it into a film, just for the record, and like all good Zombie stories, there is a Zombelina 2 - " Revenge of the Toys" already on the go.  Which should be finished before the end of the month.  But literally that is another story.

The main task now is to bring Zombelina to life:

Carl Whiteley ( Director) and Kim Emson ( animator) are asking for volunteers who have experience of puppet making, set building, animation and even dare I say it "funding" to get in touch via this blog and offer their services in return for production credits.   Anyone who is interested should have the means to get to Warrington where the studio is. 

Given the talent that is already involved, the end product should be fantastic with the chance to exhibit at film festivals all over the world.  It would be great if like minded artists shared our enthusiasm....

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Contributors: Kim Emson - Animator

After over 6 years of animating for some amazing sutdios, Kim has been seeking out an interesting new project to get her teeth and creativity into in all parts of the process. Also to be able to utilise her lovely studio space in the North West. It has been 6 years since her last short film which was also her student film- so its high time the passion was expressed again. Recently she was seeking out a producer who could be a partner in crime and this was harder than expected, until, thanks to shooting people, she met Carl!

Kim is excited about animating and directing an animated short that marries her two favourite genres- animation and zombies!!!! The slog will be long and hard and sweaty (the studio is hot in the summertime even without those hot studio lights on!) - but will be worth every bead of sweat and tear (hopeful not- but it will be tears of passion).

Kim's website is currently having a make over with the help of Viv-id Manchester, so watch this space!

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Contributors: Leighroy Marsh - Writer

                                Leighroy Marsh - Writer

Turning his hand to writing after not doing too well at everything else, Leighroy Marsh has enjoyed a small amount of success with his popular children's stories.

His first publication "The Hairy Plug Monster " is highly regarded and  is often compared to The Gruffalo and The Cat in the Hat.

Zombelina is just one of a collection of spooky stories to be published by HPM Media Ltd in November 2010 in tandem with the intended premier of the film.

Not one for writing " fluffy pink stories" that children would rather not read, Leighroy's ambition is write tales that scare the "b'jeezus" out of his young audience and make them giggle at the same time.

Motto  "Raaargh"

You can see Leighroy's perform his stories at Zombie Aid 3 on the 1st August

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Contributors : James Lawrence

James Lawence -  Artwork

At 25, James Lawrence's grand plan to turn his imagination into a living, and to never have to wear a tie to work again, continues apace.

Entirely self-trained, James will do pretty much anything that involves putting a pencil to paper, such as comics, tattoo designs, personal commissions, caricature, illustration and custom design work, to name but a few.

Pop culture is his fuel, caffeine is his vice, and his motto is "If it's weird, it wins".

See more of James's work :

Sunday, 4 April 2010

The story behind the film

The Zombelina Project.

From a throwaway comment on a chat page between Carl and Leighroy in early February the idea of Zombelina was born.

Leighroy: We were passing ideas around for Zombie related T-Shirts for Carl's clothing project such as AberZombie and Fitch etc when I mentioned to Carl that he should do a film about a possessed toy that eats people and call it "Zombelina", just for a laugh.

Surprisingly Carl said it would be a great idea and I should write it, and if I did - then he would film it.

Fair enough, I mean how many great ideas are born in Internet chat rooms, but for one reason and another nothing ever gets done about them.

However, at the time I was writing a collection of short spooky stories for publication on Halloween, and thought that I could at least write the poem at some stage, because it would work well in the collection.

To be honest I thought nothing more of it, as I was busy promoting another book I had written -The Hairy Plug Monster.. and left it at that.

About 2 week later Carl asked me again if I had given anymore thought to it because he had bumped into a freelance animator, Kim Emson with whom he had worked with before and thought that Zombelina would work better in animation rather than using live actors. He also said that he had mentioned the project to Kim and she was really interested in the idea.

Carl sent me a link to her website for me to look at and see if I was soon as I clicked on the link I knew that there was a strong chance that this could actually work, and agreed with Carl that we should all meet up and have one of those "getting to know you" kind of chats.

Apart from the storyline of "possessed toy that eats people" there wasn't much else, because until this point I hadn't written anything and there was a good chance that I was going to get exposed. A few days of dedicated writing later I had enough verses to take to the meeting which gave a good impression of the style and format that the intended animation may take. We all seemed pretty up beat about the project and went our separate ways.

Two days later the story was finished and with it - several pieces of minimalist music I had composed for a possible soundtrack including a spectacular waltz.

Carl for his part had been in touch with artist and illustrator James Lawrence who submitted some brilliant first designs of the main characters; Zombelina, The Toymaster, The Witch and an additional image of a possessed Zombelina.

Several more images followed together with a preliminary sound file of Zombelina being read by actor Steve Garry, .

So in truth what seemed like a joke at the time has now started to evolve into a serious project which will premier at Grim Fest 2010 in Manchester and go much further.

Friday, 26 March 2010



Produced and Directed by Carl Whiteley

Written by Leighroy Marsh

If you had the respect of everyone, and the friendship of no-one, how far would you go to fill the emptiness in your heart?

Imagine if you had the skills to create your own child, just as you would a toy...would you call on the supernatural to bring her to life?....

Zombelina is more than just another Zombie flick....

Directed by the founder of Zombie Aid and written by the creator of The Hairy Plug Monster....Zombelina is due to be filmed in "stop motion animation" in late spring 2010 with the premier due for Grim Fest Manchester 2010