The old man and the sea – Aleksandr Petrov
An old fisherman goes out on his fishing trip and makes a huge catch, the biggest of his life. Directed by Aleksandr Petrov.
Petrov was born in the village of Prechistoye (Yaroslavl Oblast) and lives in Yaroslavl. He studied art at VGIK (state institute of cinema and TV). He was a disciple of Yuriy Norshteyn at the Advanced School for screenwriters and directors (Moscow).
After making his first films in Russia, in Canada he adapted the novel The Old Man and the Sea, resulting in a 20-minute animated short — the first large-format animated film ever made. Technically impressive, the film is made entirely in pastel oil paintings on glass, a technique mastered by only a handful of animators in the world. By using his fingertips instead of a paintbrush on different glass sheets positioned on multiple levels, each covered with slow-drying oil paints, he was able to add depth to his paintings. After photographing each frame painted on the glass sheets, which was four times larger than the usual A4-sized canvas, he had to slightly modify the painting for the next frame and so on. It took Aleksandr Petrov over two years, from March 1997 through April 1999, to paint each of the 29,000+ frames. For the shooting of the frames a special adapted motion-control camera system was built, probably the most precise computerized animation stand ever made. On this an IMAX camera was mounted, and a video-assist camera was then attached to the IMAX camera. The film was highly acclaimed, receiving the Academy Award for Animated Short Film and Grand Prix at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival.