Mary and Max: The Exhibition at ACMI
Mary and Max : The Exhibition, ACMI
The Australian Centre for the Moving Image presents
Mary and Max : The Exhibition
Tuesday 2 March – Sunday 6 June, 2010
Gallery 2, ACMI, Free!
Mary and Max, the first animated feature film from Academy Award Winner® Adam Elliot, will be the subject of a free exhibition at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image from 2 March 2010.
The exhibition will explore the creative and technical processes behind the acclaimed Australian animation by showing a selection from the thousands of items created for the film alongside imagery from the finished product.
Items on display include character models and their various components including plasticine replacement parts used to change facial expressions, as well as moulds, sets, props, conceptual sketches, storyboards, production notes and scrapbooks. The exhibition will also feature stills and clips from the finished film, and behind-the-scenes footage shot for a making-of style ‘mockumentary’.
Mary and Max : The Exhibition, ACMI
The director, writer and designer, Elliot has personally selected the clay figures, props and sets to include in this exhibition and hopes that visitors will enjoy this behind-the-scenes insight into his craft. Mary & Max, directed, written and designed by Elliot took five years to make, including one year of filming.
Spanning 20 years and 2 continents, Mary & Max tells of a pen-pal relationship between two very different people: Mary Dinkle (voiced by Toni Collette with Bethany Whitmore as young Mary), a chubby, lonely 8-year-old living in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia; and Max Horovitz (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a severely obese, 44-year-old Jewish man with Asperger’s Syndrome living in the chaos of New York City.
As with Elliot’s previous works, which he describes as ‘clayographies’ (clay animated biographies) Mary & Max chronicles two simultaneous life stories; Mary’s trip from adolescence to adulthood, and Max’s passage from middle to old age, as it explores a bond that survives much more than the ups-and-downs of an average friendship. Mary & Max is both hilarious and poignant as it takes us on a journey that explores friendship, autism, taxidermy, psychiatry, alcoholism, where babies come from, obesity, kleptomania, sexual differences, trust, copulating dogs, religious differences, agoraphobia and many more of life’s surprises.
Elliot is a celebrated independent animator. His short films, Uncle (1996), Cousin (1998), Brother (1999) and Harvie Krumpet (2003), have participated in over five hundred film festivals and won over one hundred awards, including in 2004, the Oscar ® for Best Animated Short Film for Harvie Krumpet.
Mary & Max (2009), Elliot’s debut feature with longtime collaborator producer Melanie Coombs, enjoyed its world premiere as the opening night film of the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and has since screened at film festivals and in cinemas across Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Europe, Middle-East, South America, the UK and USA. This year it has won several coveted awards including Best Animation at the Asia Pacific Screen Awards, the Inside Film Award for Best Production Design and numerous others, including those directly recognising the producer and cinematographer, and is in the running for an Oscar nomination in a competitive field of 20 world-class animations eligible for nomination in 2010.
Elliot is no stranger to ACMI having displayed his Oscar and Harvie Krumpet figure at the centre since 2003. Now it lives in ACMI’s free permanent exhibition, Screen Worlds. Elliot will visit ACMI in 2010 when he presents Desert Island Flicks in Studio 1. In addition, ACMI’s popular free claymation workshops will return in the school holidays to coincide with the exhibition.
Mary & Max: The Exhibition is in ACMI’s Gallery 2 and opens 2 March for a strictly limited season until 6 June 2010. Entry is free.
Visit ACMI here
More of Mary and Max here
More about Adam Elliot here