Director Shaun O’Connor, writer /actor Tadhg Hickey, and animators Dog Day Media give us the story behind Teddy And Martina.
Shaun O’Connor (Director)
The original ‘Teddy and Martina’ sketch was shot as a live action piece for the RTÉ Comedy Bites initiative (a series of sketches for the RTÉ Player). It’s a clever comedy two-hander about an old Cork lad (Teddy, played by Tadhg Hickey) and the chats he has with his home help assistant Martina (Laura O Mahony). Though it’s primarily a light-hearted piece – the stories go off on wild tangents – there’s definitely a strong sense of melancholy too in how Teddy is desperate to chat about the old days while Martina busies herself around the kitchen. Tadhg and Laura are both brilliant in it and it got a great response when we put it online.
When the opportunity arose to rework it into an animated piece with Dog Day Media, we jumped at it. We used the original audio from the shoot and Tadhg and myself worked through the script with the animators, emphasizing certain aspects that suited the transition and cutting others back.
Dog Day Media did an amazing job with the adaptation and it was a fascinating process to see the characters and location move from live action footage to vibrant illustrations. Adapting an existing film piece into an animation was a new challenge but we feel it’s turned out really well, and we’re delighted to have it screen at IndieCork.
Tadhg Hickey (writer / actor)
Teddy started life as a voice I’d do to amuse myself. He’s a mash-up of old characterful Cork men I’ve encountered through the years, many inside my own family. They’re typically playful and experimental with language; surreal in imagery; and never let the truth get in the way of a good story. Fellow CCCahoots troupe member, Laura O Mahony created a companion character called Martina, his dark, mad and loveable home help. So far they’ve toured the country as part of the CCCahoots stage show; been on RTÉ; and had a radio series (Cork’s Red FM). They’re delighted to have made it to the wonderful IndieCork Festival too!
Dog Day Media (animators)
We at Dog Day Media had the challenge of bringing Teddy and Martina to life in animated form, using the voice audio from CCCahoots original live action sketch featuring the same characters. The premise of the piece is essentially the same, but where the animation differs greatly from the live action is really where the magic was for us. Illustrating and animating scenes from Teddy’s mad rantings was a lot of fun, and trying to interpret his stories creatively was a challenge in itself.
We began by creating the actual character designs of the characters themselves with help from designer Dave Prendergast of DoodleMoose Designs, and then building their world around them. Animating the characters involved a lot of exaggerating Teddy’s mannerisms and inserting little bits of additional comedy throughout the scenes to help the story along.
With all the elements in place the production lasted a little over a month, and it was a great project to be involved in. These kinds of collaborations are something we look forward to doing a lot more of in the future.
Teddy And Martina screens at IndieCork in Programme 1 of the Creative Cork selection @ 9.15pm on Tuesday, 10th October 2017.
IndieCork runs from 8 – 15 October 2017