Dinobot Flats

video, 8 minutes, colour, 2010, producer

In a rather ill-fated attempt to promote collaborative filmmaking, I assigned my students to conceive of a short film which could be shot on a simple set during class time in the studio. While this was a generally talented class of students, I had not anticipated the lack of priority this project (worth no marks) would be. However, Gabe Boyko did step up to the task and suggested a sitcom about a dinosaur, a robot, and a cross-dresser who are roommates. Somehow, because I had insisted that the class spend extra time on this project, I promised to play the robot. Some of the script was written collaboratively, some was improvised, but much was written by Gabe (whom I'd worked with once before). The badly costumed dinosaur was replaced by a cowboy, resulting in the title no longer making sense.

While not named anything other than "robot", this was the first appearance of who I would later name Canister the Robot. The head/helmet is made from an ice cream bucket with one hole cut in it and covered with blue colour correction gel. Before I would insert my head, I would put a number of power and computer cables in too. I would wear a long sleeve black turtleneck shirt, long black gloves, and black rubber boots. In later incarnations, the cables in the helmet are left out.

Technical problems between the two cameras resulted in editing being problematic and the fine tuning, sound, and titles were never completed. This project was my way of trouble-shooting a production method I would use the following year (with much greater buy-in and success) called Sock-Vile.

In this episode (the only episode), the three roommates accuse each other of having broken the blender. Not until their neighbor, a naturally irresponsible film student, enters does the truth become known. Peace is restored.