A year and a half ago I met with Sam Koji Hale a talented puppet maker and visual artist over a bowl of ramen and we talked about doing a short film based on one of the Ume in the Middle tracks. I had seen a table top bunraku production that Sam was involved with and was really taken by the artistry of the performance. When we got together it was clear that creatively we had much in common and that we should try to do something together. Sam then pitched the project to Heather Henson and she agreed to produce a short film through her production company IBEX.
After that it was off to the races. Sam put together a great crew and it was amazing to watch the whole thing come to life from initial character designs and sketches to models to puppets to the shooting and the post production work. At every step of the way my excitement grew as the film came together and now it’s finally finished! Sam is submitting it to film festivals now and we are also producing a DVD of the film with making of features and commentaries.
We’ve also built a website for the film at: OnEnsemble.org/YamasongMovie