On Thursday, September 20th, join the filmmakers behind DreamWorks Animation’s latest shorts for an exciting evening of screenings and making-of discussions as they bring ‘Bilby’ and ‘Bird Karma’ to the Lenovo Stage at Gnomon.

Set in the Australian outback, ‘Bilby’ follows the desert-dwelling marsupial Perry through the trials and tribulations of “parenthood” after he saves a defenseless chick from predators and inadvertently becomes her protector. ‘Bilby’ directors Pierre Perifel, JP Sans, and Liron Topaz will be joined by producer Kelly Cooney to discuss the journey of the film and its characters—which were originally created for DreamWorks’ Larrikins project—as well as highlight some of the innovative, new programs used to create the short.

Fable-inspired ‘Bird Karma’ brings traditional 2D animation techniques to the world of digital production as director William Salazar tells a tale of the consequences that befall a bird that is unable to change its nature. William will be joined by producer Jeff Hermann as they reveal the 20-year history behind the film and its style, the challenges and rewards of creating a 2D pipeline for digital production in order to complete the short, and more.

RSVP now for a not-to-be-missed event for animators and animation aficionados alike. This event will not be livestreamed and seating is limited, so please arrive in good time to secure a place in line. Attendee check-in will open at approximately 6:30 PM; a valid Eventbrite RSVP will be required to get an event wristband.


7:30 PM – 9:30 PM: The Making of 'Bilby' and 'Bird Karma'
9:30 PM – 10:00 PM: Audience Questions + Meet and Greet

Do you love animation? Are you curious about careers in digital production for entertainment? Our next Open House will delve into the career opportunities available in the industry and talk through the educational options at Gnomon. Plus, we’ll give you a guided tour of the campus in Hollywood!

Guest Speakers

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Pierre PerifelDirector, 'Bilby'

Born and raised near Lyon, France, Pierre is a director, animator, storyboard artist, and character designer. After falling in love with animation in his late teens, he graduated from Gobelins l?Ecole de l?Image soon after. He sharpened his teeth as a traditional animator on movies such as Curious George, Nocturna and The Illusionist before discovering CG animation. He joined DreamWorks Animation in 2008 as an animator and has worked as a supervising animator, head of character animation, and story artist on films including the Kung Fu Panda trilogy and Rise of the Guardians.

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JP SansDirector, 'Bilby'

JP is a Supervising Animator at DreamWorks Animation. Born in Venezuela and raised in Florida, JP has been driven by the combination of performance art and drawing from an early age. Through the medium of animation, he fell in love with characterization and story-telling. JP studied Computer Animation at the Miami International University of Art & Design and got his first break when he joined Blue Sky Studio, later moving to DreamWorks Animation Studios in 2011. JP?s most notable work has been on Rio, Rise of the Guardians, and the Ice Age franchise.

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Liron TopazDirector, 'Bilby'

Liron is a Character Lead Animator at DreamWorks Animation. He graduated from Ringling College of Art and Design with honors and, in 2008, was selected by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences for their exclusive internship program at Sony Pictures Imageworks. He continued there to work on Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland until moving to DreamWorks Animation and has since worked on various films including the How to Train Your Dragon franchise, The Croods, and the Kung Fu Panda franchise, where he served as Lead Character Animator of Master Oogway.

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Kelly CooneyProducer, 'Bilby'

Kelly currently serves as a co-producer on the upcoming DreamWorks Animation release, Trolls 2. Her other credits include production manager on Trolls, Puss in Boots, Kung Fu Panda: Secrets of the Scroll, and the Netflix series Dragons: Riders of Berk. Additionally, Kelly has worked in the story department on Shrek 2 and Shrek the Third has spent several years as a creative executive in development for DreamWorks Animation. She is originally from Minnesota and attended the University of Notre Dame, where she studied Film, Television, and Theater.

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William SalazarDirector, 'Bird Karma'

For the past 20-plus years, William has been an integral part of the DreamWorks family, going all the way back to the critically acclaimed film The Prince of Egypt, where he worked as a supervising animator. Over the years, William has worked as a supervising animator and/or character animator on films including Kung Fu Panda 2, Monsters vs. Aliens, Over the Hedge, Madagascar and Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron. Born on the French Mediterranean island of Corscia, he studied art at Ecole des Beaux Arts in Agnouleme, France and animation film studies at the Gobelins, L?Ecole de L?Image.

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Jeff HermannProducer, 'Bird Karma'

Jeff is currently in production on the DreamWorks Animation short ?Marooned,? and has previously served as co-producer on Kung Fu Panda 3 and as production manager on the first two Kung Fu Panda films. In his eighteen years at DreamWorks Animation, Jeff has also worked as production supervisor on titles including Sinbad and Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron. Prior to DreamWorks Animation, he spent five years at Walt Disney Feature Animation. Raised in Oak Lawn, Illinois, he attended Southern Illinois University - Carbondale where he graduated with a Bachelor?s Degree in Film Production.

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