Aardman release a poignant animated short film for Save the Children highlighting the refugee experience around the world. Directed by Peter Peake based on Graham Carter's conceptual backgrounds.
The release of 'Home' marks the one year anniversary of the war in Ukraine, but also reminds us of all the other children forced to leave their homes because of violence - there are still over four million child refugees, separated from their friends, schools and everything they know. The film reflects the real-life stories of many refugee children, such as Syrian refugee Noura, 12, who explained:
"We are refugees, but we are proud. We haven't ended up here because we wanted to, but because we had to. If you have a refugee near you, I think you should try to welcome them."
'Home' tells a story about a child refugee starting a new life in an unfamiliar world, but it also celebrates the possibilities for children to reach out and welcome new refugee friends and learn about different cultures. It shows us that by extending a hand of friendship to people, we discover how much richer our world becomes when everyone feels welcome.
The short film is told with different shaped and coloured characters to drive the story, without the use of dialogue - which means its message is accessible to children and adults of all ages, everywhere.
Graham was asked to create a world that wasn't specific to any particular culture, and he designed land and cityscapes as well as the school, inside and out. Peter, the director, wanted the environments to look like a newly created world.
"It was a delight to be contacted by Peter Peake for a green-lit project that he had me in mind for from the outset. On reading the proposal, it was clear that this wasn't just an ordinary commercial brief, but a passion project that needed to combine an important message with an original, colour-based aesthetic. Peter's vision seemed to marry up perfectly with my 'otherworldly' design approach. I jumped at the chance to create unique, subdued environments that the characters could easily sit in, without referencing any particular country, in order to really make the characters pop and give their story clarity and focus. If you watch it (the animation) a few times though, hopefully you can enjoy a lot of the background quirky detail I enjoyed putting in there!"
'Home' will be screened in primary schools across the UK alongside its general release. As Aardman Animation Co-founder and Creative Director Peter Lord said:
"Animation is an amazing medium for expressing ideas that would otherwise be difficult to communicate. At Aardman we believed that we had the expertise to help tell these stories in a way that would be sensitive, accessible, and relatable for children all around the world."
All over the world, children's lives are at risk as conflicts persist. For almost every single second of the war in Ukraine, a child has become a refugee. Save the Children's Emergency Fund allow them to respond to disaster around the world immediately. Donations to support this vital work can me made here.
You can also see the Behind the Scenes of 'Home' video. See more of Graham's concept backgrounds from this project HERE.