"What's in a word? a dialect? a language?"
5 birds of different nationalities and one fat cat learn that it's not how you say it but what you say that counts. An animation commissioned by the European Commission as part of the "languages through lenses" competition to promote multilingualism in Europe.
As someone who grew up in a mixed family speaking 3 languages I felt that although different cultures and languages can be difficult to adjust to at times, I really wanted to respond to the brief by portraying the positive, fun side of language. My starting point were the brilliant words different languages use to describe the sounds animals make, and the observation that although each language seems to have a different way of describing birdsong, a cat will pretty much always miaow. The EU motto "united in diversity" seems particularly apt - though we are all different, ultimately we are all saying the same thing.
Direction & Animation: Vida Vega
Composer: Owen Davey
Commissioned by: Ute Kohlmann for ELIA and the European Commission
*3rd Prize at the Prix Europa Festival, Berlin, October 2009*
*Nominated for the 2010 British Animation Awards Public Choice Award for best short film and part of the public choice tour in January/February 2010*
*Shortlisted in the 2010 British Animation Awards Student category*
*In competition at Ars Electronica 2011*
*In competition at New York International Children's Film Festival in March 2011*
*In competition at Canterbury Anifest 9 October 2010*
*Selected to take part in the "Young Animation" competition at the 17th Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film in May 2010*
*Screened at the 2010 British Animation Public Choice Awards*