Saanich filmmaker to screen animation short at San Diego Comic-Con

Denver Jackson’s short animated films getting noticed

A Saanich filmmaker is packing his bags for San Diego’s Comic-Con, July 20 to 23.

Thirty-year-old Denver Jackson, who resides near Beckwith Park, is heading to the internationally renowned festival. It’s not often that a local movie is screened at Comic-Con.

The film is Jackson’s 2016 animated short, The Wishing Jar, which has already been to two Oscar qualifying film festivals.

The Wishing Jar Official Teaser from Denver Jackson on Vimeo.

“It’s very exciting to go to Comic-Con,” Jackson said. “Not only do I get a free pass to the event, I’m part of a director’s film screening, followed by a Q and A.”

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Jackson has been crafting films since he moved to Saanich as a Grade 10 student at Mount Douglas secondary.

“I started with live action and then moved to animated five years ago,” Jackson said. “I love every medium of story telling, including comics, so I wanted to take on animation. The short films are only five minutes but when you watch it, there’s a lot packed in.”

It was on the success of The Wishing Jar that Jackson pitched his latest release, S.O.S., to Telus’ Storyhive contest.

Like Wishing Jar, S.O.S. is a five minute short, and has Jackson packing his bags for a trip later this year. Out of 67 entries, S.O.S. was a top Storyhive finalist with one other short film, Soggy Flakes.

“Once the [Storyhive] films were submitted, we won a contest for top animation, which includes customized career training and a trip to the Ottawa Animation Film Festival,” Jackson said.

Jackson was part of a larger creative team for S.O.S., with writing from Alain Williams, and music and sound from Marc Junker and David Parfit. Junker and Parfit also scored Wishing Jar.

It was Parfit who brought in members of the Vancouver Chinese Orchestra to record live music for S.O.S.

“S.O.S. is a sci-fi genre bending between marital arts and science fiction, inspired by old Chinese cinema, with a traditional sound,” Jackson said. “That’s why we got the Vancouver Chinese Orchestra to contribute with a variety of different instruments. It really works.”

Next up are for Jackson are plans to film a live action sci-fi, a second film inspired by his childhood on a school playground and a third film to create another animated sci-fi.

“If any of those get funding I’ll jump on them next,” Jackson said.

  • S.O.S. is a short animation about a young girl called Aria who is searching deep space for her missing mother. She discovers a signal that leads her to an abandoned ship unlike anything she has ever seen. Aria needs to solve the mystery of this ship to unlock the secrets of her mother and her past. Directed by Denver Jackson, written by Alain Williams and scored by Marc Junker, S.O.S will be a stylish short animation that will blend science fiction, suspense and martial arts action, all while telling an engaging, character driven story.
  • The Wishing Jar is an adventure that follows a young girl and her walking talking teddy bear. She chases a fallen star so that she may make one last wish. The only problem, a looming darkness follows close behind her.

 

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