I’m posting Elephants Dream mainly because of the production story behind it. Created primarily using open source software (with Blender doing the heavy lifting), this CG short was a global collaborative effort by the creative collective OrangeÃ¢â‚¬â€?a testament to what a group of like-minded people can accomplish with a little willpower and a ton of hard work.
In the spirit of open source, the film is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license, only inches away from being in the public domain. That means you’re free to download the film and do whatever you want with it, as long as you give credit to its creators. To make re-mixing/re-visioning the film even easier, all the production files are also available for download. (Unfortunately, the site is getting hammered, so the files are a little tricky to actually get at the moment.)
As far as the film itself is concerned, it’s an amazing technical achievement. The environments and mechanical creatures are wonderfully realized, and the general production quality is outstanding. I’m not really into the narrative aspects of the film. The character designs are awkward and the character animation is a bit stiff. But Elephants Dream is still worth a watch just for the eye candy, and I applaud Orange for this incredible achievement.
Supporting this film was a brilliant move by Blender. Not only did it help improve various aspects of the software package, it has created a huge swell of interest in open source software. Even though I’ve known of Blender for a while, I’m downloading it for the first time right now to give it a spin. (Pun intended.)
Orange’s site (with download links aplenty for Elephants Dream)
Wikipedia entry for Elephants Dream