Interview with ‘Rock Dog 2’ director Mark Baldo

We talked to Director Mark Baldo about his collaboration with ReDefine on the animated feature ‘Rock Dog 2’.

Tell us a bit about the project and how it follows on from the highly successful ‘Rock Dog’. What’s in store for Bodi and his band?

Our story starts one year after the original ‘Rock Dog’. Bodi, Darma and Germur’s band, True Blue, have become locally famous in the village of Snow Mountain. They even have fans (the sheep villagers and two teenage red pandas named Wei and Shumai). But Bodi’s biggest fan remains his father, Khampa. When a music mogul sheep named Lang gives them the opportunity to tour with pop sensation Lil’ Foxy, Bodi and his friends learn that fame comes at a price, and ultimately discover that only by staying true to yourself can you unleash the power of Rock N’ Roll!

Animation is a highly collaborative medium. How has your collaboration with ReDefine helped to deliver your vision so far?

Collaborative is definitely the word that comes to mind when I think about ReDefine. We are always working together to find creative solutions for all our production challenges – without sacrificing the story-telling or the visual quality of the show. So far, this creative collaboration is working very well.

What attracted you to ReDefine?

The multiple office locations in London, Montréal and Mumbai allow for round-the-clock production as well as more opportunities for communication and collaboration. Splash previously worked with Prime Focus (the predecessor company of ReDefine) on Mariah Carey’s animated Christmas special ‘All I Want for Christmas Is You’ and was very happy with the studio and quality of that production.

Which has been your favourite character to work on and why?

I have enjoyed working on Lang, the villain of ‘Rock Dog 2’. He is a new character that we created at Splash and it has been a great experience to write, cast and direct this over-the-top music mogul sheep. Villains are always a lot of fun and Lang is no exception. Under his super cool, hip, woollen exterior hides an angry villain with a sinister plan for Bodi and all the musicians of Rock N’ Roll Park. This dual responsibility gives me a lot to play with!

What have been the biggest artistic challenges?

To match the style and quality of the original Rock Dog film at a lower budget and in a shorter production time than that of the original film.

Can you recall specific moments when you felt the film clicking into place?

I like to tell stories that have humor, as well as honest emotion. There are a lot of fun, humorous and musical moments throughout ‘Rock Dog 2’ that I am very proud of, but the one moment that I felt “clicking into place” was when I saw the animation of Lang visiting Snow Mountain to offer Bodi the opportunity to tour with Lil’ Foxy. The conversation happens with Lang, Bodi and Khampa sitting at the kitchen table. Bodi is eager and excited to go – Lang is in full-on ‘salesman’ mode (laying it on pretty thick) and Khampa is very suspicious and protective of his son. The personalities of each of the characters, as well as their specific emotions, all come through in this complex sequence. The audience will have no problem understanding and following along with the important story-point.

 What is your vision for the franchise going forward?

These characters are so appealing and fun to watch that I feel there are definitely more ‘Rock Dog’ stories to tell, with more fun, catchy songs to perform and Rock N’ Roll adventures to be had with Bodi, Darma, Germur, Khampa and the whole Snow Mountain Gang! Stay tuned for ‘Rock Dog 3’ – coming soon!

 

TESTIMONIAL

“ReDefine really delivered for me and HBO on this project; starting fully remote before the pandemic started, then continuing to make deadlines we needed up through delivery. I appreciated Serkan’s patience with changes that came up, and would definitely work with ReDefine again on a similar project!”

Karen Heston – Additional VFX Supervisor and VFX Aesthetic Supervisor, The Undoing

TESTIMONIAL

“The visual effects for Brahmastra will pioneer new techniques and processes that have not previously been seen in movies for the mainstream Indian film market. Having worked with DNEG, and now ReDefine, I know that together we are creating amazing visuals that reflect a quality and calibre that audiences have come to expect from big budget Hollywood films.”

Ayan Mukherjee – Director, Brahmastra

TESTIMONIAL

“COLLABORATIVE” is the phrase that comes to mind when I think about ReDefine. I’ve had the pleasure of working with ReDefine for a little over a year now, and throughout the production process, the work has been excellent and we have always been able to collaborate – finding creative solutions for all our production challenges. I am very excited to continue our working relationship and look forward to completing Rock Dog 2 with the ReDefine team in 2020.”

Mark Baldo – Director, Rock Dog 2

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