Press quotes about the movie

We were thrilled to pack the TIFF Bell Lightbox for the world premiere of Wapos Bay: Long Goodbyes! Here’s what some of the press had to say about the movie…

“Long Goodbyes was charming, funny & oozed a loving warmth. Would definitely see again!”
Emily Claire Afan, Writer / Contributor, Village Gamer and Orange Paperclip

“Wapos Bay: Long Goodbyes is a family friendly film that uses a creative and enhanced form of stop motion animation to tell the story of two kids whose father has accepted a political position that will mean relocating to the big city – and their ever more complicated attempts to prolong and pospone their farewells. While it has all of the hallmarks of the kind of well meaning children’s TV programming that the characters and storyline originally come from, including a ‘good citizen’ message, the clever script also features a few jokes just for the parents. The animation is seamless and slickly produced, with elaborately constructed sets.”
Anya Wassenberg, Writer / Reviewer, Arts & Culture Blog

“Wapos Bay has enjoyed six seasons of broadcast as an animated series. It has been a very positive experience for young aboriginal people to have themselves represented in television, as one audience member stated in the Q&A following the [world premiere at imagineNATIVE]. A child being able to self-identify with characters in the media is very important in identitying development and helps reaffirm self-worth. Many parents expressed their gratitude to the creators, cast and crew of the series.”
Tyler Hagan, Arts Correspondent, CBC

Pixar Master Class Partly Sponsored by Wapos Bay Productions

Wapos Bay Productions is sponsoring Pixar artists Andrew Gordon’s and Matthew Luhn’s world class Animation & Story Master Class with a private screening and reception to be held on September 16 and 17th in convocation hall at the U of S.

This Master Class is a two-day seminar for industry professionals, students and enthusiasts. Demos and lectures organized with visuals, live-action and animated clips to give attendees the tools needed to create their own stories and quality animations.

At the end of Day 1, attendees will head to the Broadway Theatre for a private screening of the Wapos Bay movie: Long Goodbyes followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers and a reception.

Tickets are $450 ($250 for students). Click here to register!

Wapos Bay Lives on in Digital World

By Emily Claire Afan, Playback Daily

Wapos Bay the series may be coming to an end on the small screen this fall, but the Saskatchewan team behind the children’s stop-motion animated series has plans for the franchise to live on in the digital media world.

Producers Dennis and Melanie Jackson, and Anand Ramayya recently wrapped production on the final episode, which will air as a feature-length MOW on APTN called Long Goodbyes.

Marrying the traditional art of stop-motion animation with the new interactive side was no easy task, but the team was intent on keeping the same look of the series across the board.

According to Hulomedia transmedia producer Ryan Lockwood, WaposBay.com is a “very close translation” of the series that plays on the exploration and adventure themes that have drawn kids to the series for the last five seasons on APTN. (The site received CMF funding.)

WaposBay.com launched last fall, and this coming fall, the interactive offering is Wapos Racerz! (pictured), a Mario Kart-esque style casual racing game from Toronto independent game company Phantom Compass.

“It was a challenge to do the game in stop-motion,” show creator Dennis Jackson tells Playback Daily, echoing Lockwood’s thoughts on keeping the stop-motion look consistent across Wapos products. “It would probably be easier to do it in Flash, but we were adamant to have it look like the show.”

Lockwood worked with fellow Hulo producer Brooke Burgess on the game as well, noting that animators on the MOW also contributed to the creation of Racerz!

Digital extensions of the brand slated for this fall include an interactive storybook series for mobile and tablet platforms that allows readers to flip between Cree, French and Inuktitut languages, as well as linking to videos on its YouTubechannel. On top of that, Wapos Bay episodes will soon be available for downloading on iTunes, streaming rentals and for sale on DVD on Amazon.com, IndieFlix and Netflix.

On tap next for Hulo and WBP is another stop-motion sci-fi project called Guardians, a project which Melanie Jackson says is already locked into coproduction deals with Australia and New Zealand.

Discover The Wonder of Wapos Bay

“I love it when I accidentally stumble upon really cool Canadian stuff. This is, hands down, the coolest kid’s show I have seen in a very long time. Wapos Bay is a super creative stop motion animation television series that is produced in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. It is purely Canadian and super aboriginal. The animation is fantastic and the scripts are funny and engaging. Plenty of Star Wars references and guest appearances by real Canadian celebrities like David Suzuki, Adam Beech, and Jordin Tootoo. It’s so awesome to see puppet versions of these Canadian icons.

Did I mention the website? It’s super interactive with plenty of hidden gems to keep both kids, parents, and animation enthusiasts entertained for more than just a few minutes.

Now if I could just convince them to do a Gogo Bonkers stop motion animation video. Hmmmm. Perhaps a phone call to Anand Ramayya & Dennis Jackson is in order? Sounds like a plan to me. In the meantime, check out Wapos Bay and enjoy!”

- GoGo Bonkers

Read more at  the GoGo Bonkers blog!

Nominated for Best Comedy and the Ruth Shaw Award

Wapos Bay is nominated for a Golden Sheaf Award for Best Comedy as well as the Ruth Shaw Award at this year’s Yorkton Film Festival! Both nominations are for Episode 29 – The World According to Devon, written by Trevor Cameron and directed by Cam Lizotte.

Congratulations and good luck to Dennis Jackson, Melanie Jackson, Cam Lizotte, Anand Ramayya, Trevor Cameron and the Wapos Bay cast and crew!

Synopsis

Devon tells his version of the T-Bear and Devon living in prehistory and trying to become men.  In Devon’s story, Wapos Bay is negotiating peace with the Brown Toe people; a rival tribe down the river and the Brown Toe Chief is concerned about reports of strangers on the river.

In a bid to show their maturity they discover the Principal Steele is on a trade mission whilst looking for a spice route to China. They boys help him and inadvertently get put in the middle of Wapos Bay’s peace with the Brown Toe people and this new stranger. The boys stand up for Principal Steele and learn becoming men isn’t just about showing how strong you are; it’s also about using their sensibilities.  The Brown Toe people and Wapos Bay adults end up trading with Principal Steele and Talon, T-Bear and Devon are declared men for their bravery.  Devon ends his story and impresses everyone including his teacher and they allow him to tell another story.  Devon has found his new gift of oral storytelling.

Sneak Peek at “Guardians” Character Design

While Wapos Bay is in production on the movie, Wapos Wheelz! video game and eBook, the Art Department’s Amber Rees finds time to sculpt the maquette for CHUM, one of the characters of “Guardians,” Dennis Jackson’s next project.

The sculpt of CHUM is based on a concept drawing by Andrew Doll seen here:

and the detailed architecture of the maquette here:

Guardians is a sci-fi, post-apocalyptic adventure series for teen boys.’ – Dennis Jackson, Creator.

I think we’re all excited about trying something new and that’s original and that’s another creation from Dennis that we can all sink our teeth into creatively and technically because it will be a totally different thing than shooting Wapos Bay. There will be lots of action sequences, lots of robots, and lots of different terrains that I think we’ll be able to create for the show.’ –Anand Ramayya, Producer

Synopsis:  In the distant future, the Earth is reborn and nature has been replenished after a global catastrophe triggers a twenty six thousand year long ice age, the result of which has destroyed modern civilization and has brought about the extinction of ninety five percent of planetary species as we know it.  n massive bunkers built deep beneath the Earth, the Guardians, advanced machine-like androids were pre-programmed to initiate human births. The Guardians raised the children specifically to re-populate the New Earth. The oldest humans are fifteen years old and must lead the human race. They soon learn that they are not alone on the planet. They discover that an intelligent species, the Dumathar, has staked out a home world beneath the Earth’s oceans. Connected to their past, armed with advanced technology, the youth must balance the danger of repeating history and co-existing in the New World.

Guardians is in development with support from the Canada Media Fund, SaskFilm, APTN and Wapos Bay Productions.

About Wapos Bay

The kids of Wapos Bay love adventure. And their playground is a vast area that’s been home to their Cree ancestors for millennia: northern Saskatchewan.

Ten-year-old T-Bear, 9-year-old Talon and 6-year-old Raven star in Wapos Bay, a light-hearted stop-motion animation series about growing up in a remote Cree community. In Wapos Bay, modern life and ancient traditions meet. Hunting and gathering, dog sledding and shimmering northern lights are part of every day but so are video games, TV and cell phones. Guided by elders, extended family and their own insatiable curiosity, the three children learn how to balance traditional ways with newer ones. Their discoveries unfold against the backdrop of northern Saskatchewan’s varied seasons—winter, spring thaw, spring, summer, fall and freeze-up.  As they explore the world around them, the three children acquire some valuable lessons about respect, cooperation, honesty and tolerance. And of course, they also teach the adults a few things.

Aboriginal filmmakers Dennis and Melanie Jackson’s exquisite characters come alive with the voices of well known Aboriginal performers such as Gordon Tootoosis (North of 60, Legends of the Fall), Andrea Menard (The Velvet Devil) and Lorne Cardinal (Corner Gas). Wapos Bay is a fascinating, and often humorous portrait of a northern Aboriginal community from the perspective of its children.

The Future of Wapos Bay Studio

As the Wapos Bay crew is busy in production on the movie, Long Goodbyes, the Wapos Wheelz video games & eBook, the Production team looks forward to what the future may bring.


Welcome to Wapos Bay

Welcome to the official production blog of the award-winning stop motion children’s show, Wapos Bay!

This is where you will find all things Wapos Bay. Visit us regularly for the latest news, contests, and fun at home activities for you and your family, as well as to learn more about the studio (from the building of the set to cast and crew bios). And to stay involved with our day-to-day activities, add us as a friend or follow us on: Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. And subscribe to our YouTube Channel!

The blog is categorized: the Process, the People and the Press. The Process is where you can check out informative posts on topics such as adapting the show into French for our francophone audience. The People is where you will find the cast, crew and producers. And the Press is where you can check out all the awards we’re extremely thankful for having won over the past couple of years.

And alas, all good things must come to an end. We’ve begun shooting “Long Goodbyes”, a Wapos Bay movie, where the gang has their whole world turned upside down and must join forces to keep their family together and in Wapos Bay before it’s too late.

Wapos Bay Series Now Playing in French on APTN

January 10, 2011 (Saskatoon, SK) – The four-time Gemini award winning Wapos Bay series will now reach French-speaking audiences across Canada on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN).

The French version of Wapos Bay is now showing on APTN on Mondays at 9:00am ET (HD), 10:00am ET (East), 4:30pm ET (East & HD), Tuesdays at 4:30pm MT (West) and Sundays at 9:00am ET (HD) and 10:00am ET (East). Highlights of the series include a guest visit from Mike Holmes (Holmes on Homes) in “Self Improvement,” as well as film festival hits “Raiders of the Lost Art,” “Raven Power” and “The Hardest Lesson.”

Montreal-based DBCom Media versioned 13 of the 34 episodes with the financial support of the Canada Media Fund (formerly the Canadian Television Fund), National Film Board of Canada and APTN.

“We really fell in love with the show. Mainly for its wonderful characters, but also for the impressive craftmenship and the compelling, funny and intelligent stories. DBcom Media is happy and proud to have participated in presenting to the French speaking audience such a soulful and refreshing show.”

-  Dominique Lalonde, Directrice de production, DBCom.

Actors included great Quebec talents such as Guy Nadon (Mushom), Hugolin Chevrette (Devon), Élisabeth Chouvalidzé (Kokum Mary) and François-Nicolas Dolan (T-Bear), who also played Nemo in the French version of Finding Nemo.

View a clip and read about DBcom’s adaptation at:

(Francais) http://bit.ly/hYFi9l

(English) http://bit.ly/gGLGpg

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