A wrong number dialed for pizza delivers espionage and the counterpoint of a booming narration along with the promise of newly rendered spills and thrills.
Stéphane Coëdel’s opening title sequence for The Amazing Adventures of Kid Cole & Klay gets its details right: the slow, undulating rowboat POV, a mere oar’s reach of the salivating dead in company of other emissaries of evil.
See Mr. Invisible. Get cozy with the title card for “Tonight’s Episode,” bathed in boggy, absinthe-impelled atmosphere featuring noxious architecture-fondling tentacles. Toe-tap to that dizzy rocket bebop beat by Ben Locket. The end of the opening sequence is thunderous paranoia foisted — “THEY HAVE TO! THEY ARE OUR ONLY HOPE!” It’s Dilbert and Doctor Who at the drive-in.
Artwork progression for city shot
Stéphane Coëdel: Being huge fans of sci-fi and horror movies from the 50′s, this opening title was clearly a tribute to all those cheesy and naive visions of constant threats to humanity with stop-motion robots, actors in monster suits and model kit cities under attack. I’ve always been fascinated by hand made sfx and the little mistakes which make the whole thing feel warm. That was the main inspiration for this title.
It was the first time I worked with Pete Candeland (Gorillaz music videos, Rockband) When we first met, we decided what needed to be told in the open, he showed me some sketches he did to give me an idea of the kinds of scenes he had in mind. I was then free to come up with any idea. He trusted me totally. I think each of us got lucky in the way that we are both fans of this kind of quirky “sci-fi/horror” style, and I’ve been collecting soundtracks and old sci-fi art pieces and books for ages now so I had everything ready to be used. The whole process went really smoothly. I would even say it was quite easy; right team, right timing, right combination of minds and talents.
I first came up with a rough storyboard quickly edited on a reference mix I did, using few different soundtracks from old movies and TV series (The Day the Earth Stood Still, Bernard Herrmann, Echo Four Two, Laurie Johnson and the Chips TV series by Bruce Broughton).
I always choose the music before animating or editing. It helps me to make the rhythm flow, to picture what should be the final result and how to choose each element, to give more impact to the edit. After that, we sent the rough animatic as a reference to Ben Locket, the composer. And to Kevin Dart, who started to produce some of the backgrounds and creatures. I asked him to be as free as he liked, since his style fit perfectly with the tone of the project.
Then I produced a colorboard to decide of how the lights and colors would evolve with the music and the edit.
And then came the real animation and compositing process. Kevin sent me his backgrounds and monsters. I retouched them to include them in the shots (mainly adding some more color tones and cutting them out in pieces for the animation). I wanted to give the audience the same feeling I had when I saw these old monster movies; the grainy picture, Ray Harryhausen style of animation for the giant killer robots and monsters. As if they were either stop-motion animated models or animatronics mixed with real footage like the smoke, the sparkles, the lights.
The quirky voice over was directly inspired by one movie from the 50′s called Kronos. The aim was to make the whole thing feel not perfect, the less computerized I could, and make it feel warm. I had 5 weeks to do the whole thing.