Director: SYLVAIN CHOMET
A starved gendarme watches mournfully as a little old lady sits feeding wonderful delicacies to pigeons in the park. He is desperate to share their fortune. But when he fashions himself a disguise and fills his belly at the expense of this little old lady, the gendarme forgets to consider that he may not be her only pet.
Sylvain Chomet had the idea for The Old Lady and the Pigeons in 1987 but it took ten years, and a move across three countries before it could finally be realised. He did almost all the animation himself, by hand:
‘It was the only way to do it. When you start with an idea like that there are not many people who will believe in it.’
Once finished however, the film won several awards and was nominated for an Oscar. Chomet then met French producer Didier Brunner and together they began to conceive Triplettes de Belleville (Belleville Rendezvous), which went on to receive two Oscar nominations.
‘[After The Old Lady and the Pigeons] it was easier to find good artists to work on Triplettes de Belleville. It’s like a snow-ball. You start with a very small ball you make yourself and then you roll it and it gets bigger.’
Commentary by Sylvain Chomet recorded in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Film courtesy of Les Armateurs