I should have known that the amazing creative mind of children's book writer and illustrator, William Joyce, was behind the Academy Award winning animated short film The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr Morris Lessmore.
William Joyce's picture book A Day with Wilbur Robinson (1990) was the book that began my collection of sophisticated children's picture books back in 1993.
If I was hosting a fantasy dinner party of contemporary children's book writers and illustrators then William Joyce would be at the head of the table sharing a place with Maira Kalman.
They both manage to pull off that incredibly difficult combination of writing great stories (engaging, fanciful, funny, not too short, not too long) combined with pictures that are uniquely theirs, and that bring their stories to life on the page.
Anyway, here's Moonbot Studio's blurb about The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore :
'Inspired in equal measures, by Hurricane Katrina, Buster Keaton, The Wizard of Oz, and a love for books, "Morris Lessmore" is a story of people who devote their lives to books and books who return the favor. The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore is a poignant, humorous allegory about the curative powers of story. Using a variety of techniques (miniatures, computer animation, 2D animation), award-winning author/illustrator William Joyce and Co-director Brandon Oldenburg present a hybrid style of animation that harkens back to silent films and M-G-M Technicolor musicals. "Morris Lessmore" is old-fashioned and cutting edge at the same time.'
Follow this link to be transported to a wonderful alternate world for the next fifteen minutes of your life. I've just returned from the journey and the world seems just that little bit more magical and brighter now. Bright enough even to stop procrastinating and head to the office to mark student essays.
You can find out more about the film here