Canadian animated horror film THE SHUTTERBUG MAN now streaming for free.
Your humble editor also makes his living as a filmmaker and musician. So it was with great excitement that, in 2014, I accepted Canadian animator Christopher Walsh‘s request to provide the score for his stop-motion horror film, THE SHUTTERBUG MAN.
It was a thrill because I composed that score with my then 7 year old son Jackson, who played the electric violin over my synthesizer tones and guitar scrapes. And the cherry on top was having my Queen, the immortal European horror film icon Barbara Steele provide the narration for the picture, in her chilly, sensual, inimitable style…
Now, after an entire year spent traveling the world at film festivals and winning awards of every sort, Walsh is making THE SHUTTERBUG MAN free for fans to watch anytime they want.
We’ll let the filmmaker himself speak on his reasons for making this remarkable, haunting picture available for all to enjoy:
From Christopher Walsh:
“Its been a year since the film premiered. Since that time, its played steadily at festivals all over the world, as far away as Australia and South Africa, and that has been hugely satisfying for me. I toiled away for two years on the film, mainly on my own (as is always the case for indie animation projects). So after all that investment, to see it so well received by the world has obviously been a serious validation of all that I’ve invested.
I find that audiences really appreciate the process of stop motion, and respect it, since they know just how much labor is involved in creating every single frame. Even as the story is busy unfolding on screen, viewers can sense the hard work, they can sense that a person crafted everything in the frame by hand, and then animated it the same way. That intense process of stop motion sort of gives each frame a stronger power, a greater weight, and when all those frames accumulate into a finished film, the overall effect is pretty powerful. Ive also been please with the reaction Ive managed to get from audiences during the final scene in the movie. I never get tired of the seeing audiences react to the final seconds of the film. It’s hard to craft scares in general, let alone when you only have a few minutes, but I feel like I offer audiences a pretty good one, especially considering the scare’s being generated by a miniature monster!
Barbara Steeles voice work is also something that’s gone over incredibly well with viewers, and with her many fans, in particular. When youre crafting a short film that relies on narration, that narration needs to works almost like a poem- it tells a basic story, but it also evokes a mood, and a tone, the way poetry does. Barbara doesn’t just recite the narration, she performs it, and as the person who wrote the words, having them brought to life by her talent is supremely satisfying. As amazing as Barbaras physical presence may be in her other screen roles, her voice in The Shutterbug Man is so rich and distinctive, it’s a force unto itself. It wouldnt be the film it is, without Barbaras talented voice work…
Its had a very good festival run, and as that fun inevitably winds down, I felt it was time to share it more widely. A lot of people supported the film via the online store, purchasing their own exclusive digital copies of the film, along with the digital book and poster. I really appreciate that support, and I emailed every single supporter personally to say thanks, since it’s a big thing to open your wallet for a short film. I thanked them, and told them their money would go right into my next film- probably to help cover material costs for sets and puppets. But a year has gone by, and now its a chance to let The Shutterbug Man creep even further out into the world. And making it free to view is the best way to achieve that, obviously.
Im really proud of The Shutterbug Man, as a character. I feel like he has some real, primal power to him. He’s basically a demented artist, who will stop at nothing in his pursuit of his “art”. And like any good bogeyman, his power only grows stronger, the more people know (and watch) him. Like Barbaras character says, Children used to scare each other with the story of The Shutterbug Man. Now with the film going public, the whole world can be scared by my miniature ghoul!
I hope if people like it, they’ll share it around a lot. Long live The Shutterbug Man, and long live stop motion ”
Here then, ladies and gentlemen, is THE SHUTTERBUG MAN…