“This story is also about not giving up and giving hope. But the great thing about it is that you can see so much in it. Everyone might see something else in it and that’s also something I really like about it,” stated Jacob Frey, director of The Present.
“Since its creation, The Present has won 59 international awards including Best Animated Short at the California International Shorts Festival, Best Foreign Short Animation at the International Family Film Festival, and Best Animation at the Canada International Film Festival and NYLA International Film Festival,” stated mnn.com.
The Present, a graduation project for the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg in Germany, was made by Jacob Frey and Markus Kranzler, as stated in mnn.com. It was based on a comic strip that Fabio Coala made, according to twistedsifter.com.
The Present is about a boy who spends his time playing video games, but one day, his mom comes home with a present for him. He opens the box and realizes it is a dog, but this dog is missing a leg. When the boy notices, he is immediately disgusted and tosses the pup onto the floor. The pup is not discouraged and starts playing with a ball to get the boy’s attention. The boy eventually gives in and goes outside to play with the puppy, as stated in laughingsquid.com.
“When he starts to react very negatively to the present… you start judging him right away. Pretty much the same way he starts judging this little dog… When the boy starts to slowly warm up… you finally start to realize why he reacted so negatively in the first place,” stated Jacob Frey.
“In your head, you go through the entire movie story again and you start to put the puzzle pieces together… That doesn’t mean what he did was right, but you start to understand why he reacted that way. Hopefully you think about yourself as well on how you judged someone without knowing him,” added Frey.
Fabio Coala is well known in Brazil and his comics are usually in Portuguese. According to Jacob Frey, one of Fabio’s “followers” translated the comic into English, and when Jacob Frey read it, he was touched and knew that he wanted to make a short film.
“He granted us the rights to turn it into a short film, but he didn’t really seem to realize, though, how much time and work we were willing to put into it. So when we showed it to him one year and three months later, he was blown away by it and him and his wife both cried. I am really glad he like what we did with his short,” Jacob Frey stated.