It all starts with a curious little girl.
She crashes on a desolate planet and struggles to transform a dark, disturbed landscape into a place of joy and delight. The audience watches all of the action unfold through only the heroine’s facial expressions, visual effects, and music—no dialogue needed.
This is the adventure that “Escape,” Dolby’s latest animated original short, invites audiences into with a powerful combination of Dolby technologies. Dolby Vision gives life to a landscape of color and contrast beyond the capability of standard digital imaging technologies.
For example, the crystal that the film’s heroine holds, the object driving all of the action, “is a color that is designed to show off the brightness and range of colors available in Dolby Vision,” says Angus McGilpin, senior director of content development at Dolby and the producer who oversaw the film. And the film’s audio, which showcases an original soundtrack by Imogen Heap, encircles the viewer from all sides and overhead in a fully immersive soundscape made possible by Dolby Atmos technology.
“We want to inspire future filmmakers to use technology to help tell better stories,” says McGilpin. “And with ‘Escape,’ both visually and with sound, we really pull out all the stops to show what’s possible.”
“Escape,” featured below, strands its heroine in a hostile, far-off dimension. Only a great feat of curiosity, bravery, and ingenuity will see her through. Take the journey with her, then read on for more about the making of the digital short that lit up the 2017 film festival circuit.
From ‘Silent’ to ‘Escape’
A few years ago, Dolby produced an animated short called “Silent” that starred a little girl, “the Kid,” behind the keys of an organ in a silent movie theater. It was a celebration of great audiovisual storytellers. In 2017, the team had the opportunity to add a new chapter to the story, this time revisiting the Kid as a teenager and showcasing the power of both Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision. The result is an inspiring film awash in sound and color and backed by an original song from Grammy Award-winning artist Imogen Heap.
“Escape” was created to delight the senses no matter the location, McGilpin says, “but of course the best way to experience the film is in Dolby.” And this viewing experience isn’t limited to a Dolby Cinema. Home entertainment systems or even newer mobile devices that support the latest Dolby technology can deliver the full “Escape” experience.
McGilpin says he hopes “Escape” inspires storytellers everywhere to use technology to share better and more beautiful art. As for the Kid, McGilpin assures, “This isn’t the last story for our girl.”