Confessions of a Vegetarian Kind

11 Second Club Final Entry - February 2016
Danny Kneip | March 5, 2016 | No Comments

This concept hit me late in the month and I think it’s quite unconventional.  Potentially offensive.  But I was raised in the Catholic Church so I feel perfectly justified in passing my general disappointments, misery and offensiveness on to you.  🙂

I admit I was lost when I heard the audio clip for the first time because, on it’s face, it seems very limiting.  Imagine two guys in a diner – one a patron, the other taking the order.  Pretty obvious, and it promises to be extremely redundant among the 231 entries.

But mid-month, it struck me as amusing if the character saying “I’m a vegetarian” was confessing this to his priest inside a confessional.  The sense of pride, embarrassment or guilt on behalf of the vegetarian is ultimately beside the point, although all of these emotions should certainly play a part in his performance.

Now as a child, I spent lots of time in the confessional having my sins absolved and being administered penance.  10 Hail Marys, 5 Our Fathers, and of course, a reminder to stop all my damn sinning!  So I’m drawing on my own 8-year experience for this project.

What I truly love about this “confessional” concept is that the priest has no idea what a vegetarian is.  He responds, “You’re a what?” as if truly perplexed.  When the priest questions the sinner about it and realizes he’s wasting his time, judgment, rather than acceptance, is cast.  Of course, the real world works differently.  I just wanted to make something silly.

JOHNNY DEPP REACTION

There’s a line the sinner delivers: “I don’t eat meat” followed by a long pause.  I thought about this for some time and finally recalled a moment from The Graham Norton Show where Norton tells Johnny Depp that Benedict Cumberbatch looks like a sea critter.  The response is pure hilarity.

NORTON: “When Benedict became famous, one of the first things his fans, this is so random, that his fans decided that he looked very much like an otter.  Are you aware of this?”

Thoughtful pause.

DEPP: “I’m sorry?”

When provided with a strange factoid, Depp first tries to grasp the information.  When it fails to compute, he asks for clarification in a very genuine way with a brilliant expression of puzzlement.  I love this clip, as well as Depp’s response in that moment.

And I’m lifting it directly for my priest character, as the timing is perfect.

MY ENTRY

FINAL SCORE

I reckoned my final score would be around 50 or 60.  Sure enough, I finished 56 out of 231.  I’m actually quite pleased with that.  The comments were generous (folks seemed to really dig the concept) and I know this is not my best work.  I really screwed myself with the clock, and for that reason, I’m thankful to not only have had the chance to enter the contest, but to finish ahead of some other really great artists.

If you have a passion for animation, I do encourage you to visit the 11SecondClub and give it a shot!  It’s free and there’s so much you can learn, not just about animation, but about yourself.

Thanks for watching!

Cheers,