ᓇᓄᕐᓗᒃ / Giant Bear

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A timeless Inuit legend about a solitary man, a giant bear and their daunting foes: each other
(now-15 Nov worldwide) A timeless Inuit legend about a solitary man, a giant bear and their daunting foes: each other. Centered on a confrontation between the last monster bear and an Inuit hunter, Giant Bear is a chilling short that brings an ancient story out of the North. In Giant Bear, we follow a hunter in the depths of starvation. The snow is thick, his dogs are mysteriously dying and food is nowhere to be found. A quest for answers leads him straight to a nanurluk, an iceberg-sized polar bear, setting up a “kill or be killed” battle that pits one man’s wits against a fearsome foe. A co-production between Taqqut Productions (Iqaluit) and e→d films (Montreal) this animated short film follows a lone Inuit hunter as he uses his wisdom, courage, and experience to find and confront his terrifying adversary -- a nanurluk (an iceberg-sized polar bear) in an epic battle for survival. Animated in a painterly, hybrid 2D and 3D style, some of the film was made using real time animation from Unity game engine, via the open source Scene Track plug-in. This traditional Inuit legend explores the power, beauty, and perils of nature through a meticulously handcrafted CG animation lens. The score, by composer Tyler Fitzmaurice in collaboration with singer Beatrice Deer, bassist Michael Felber, synth player Parker Shper, and electronic musician Greg Debicki (Woulg), features traditional northern singing techniques woven into an ethereal soundscape to bring the tundra to life.

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Director Bio

Neil Christopher moved many years ago to Resolute Bay in northern Canada. Neil quickly fell in love with the North—the landscape, the wildlife, and the culture. It was also in those first years in the North that Neil was introduced to the rich mythology of the Canadian Inuit. For the last ten years, Neil has been researching Inuit myths and legends and has used this research to develop publications for children, youth, and adults. In 2012, Neil wrote and directed his first animated film, Amaqqut Nunaat: The Country of Wolves. This film was an international success, garnishing many awards and critical acclaim. The success of that film prompted Neil to start the film company Taqqut Productions with his publishing colleagues, Louise Flaherty and Danny Christopher. Neil currently lives with his family in the capital of Nunavut, Iqaluit.

Daniel Gies is a Co-founder and the Art + Tech Director at e→d films, a Montreal-based animation studio that makes award-winning films with a handcrafted feel. With 20 years worth of projects behind him, Daniel is an accomplished animator and inventor. His peers know him as a leader in pushing the limits of off-the-shelf animation software through use of customized scripting, hybridization, and creative programming. His extensive library - comprised of more than 200 online video tutorials which explore his innovative and unique computer animation techniques - has an active and organically growing international online following. When he’s not doodling in his sketchbook or experimenting with animation techniques, he can be found with paper and glue in his hands.

Credits

Directed by Neil Christopher
Daniel Gies

Written by Jose Angutinngurniq

Production Company Taqqut Productions

Produced by Neil Christopher
Monica Ittusardjuat
Louise Flaherty
Nadia Mike
Danny Christopher
Archita Ghosh
Emily Paige

Cast Solomon Awa
Beatrice Deer

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