'150 Million Years Ago' is our latest of Film of the Month

11 Mar 2024 in Film of the Month

4 mins
'150 Million Years Ago' is our latest of Film of the Month

Journey back through time with our latest Film of the Month winner 150 Million Years Ago. Following a family of dinosaurs who must survive in a prehistoric world of adventure and danger, from skilled animator Danylo, aged 17, in London. Plus a special mention to End of Term from Meadows Primary School Film Club in Shropshire.

150 Million Years Ago (engaging for 7+) is a vibrant and imaginative animation that brilliantly recreates the wonders and dangers of prehistoric Earth.

The film conveyed an atmosphere of peril and suspense to great effect, and the sound design was beyond brilliant.

Film of the Month Judge on '150 Million Years Ago'

We caught up with our Film of the Month winner and filmmaker Danylo to find out more about how he bought this world to life.

What inspired you to base your film in this historical period?

When I heard that the task was to make an animation on a topic of my choice, I didn't even have to think too long what my animation would be about. I'm a very big fan of dinosaurs and I've been doing sculptures all my life. I just understood that no other topic would give such space for my imagination as a plasticine animation about dinosaurs.

How did you land on the story for your film?

I hardly thought about the plot, the story just appeared in my head, and I just had to figure out how to show it on the screen. In my film, I tried to show a beautiful and exciting prehistoric story, but at the same time make it realistic.

All dinosaurs shown in the film - Allosaurus, Stegosaurus, Ceratosaurus and Comptosaurus - really existed and lived in North America about 150 million years ago.

We loved the sound design, how did you achieve this technically?

For the sound design, I downloaded most of the sounds from internet libraries. I made sure it was all copyright free first.

The animation in this film is amazing, how did you achieve this?

I've used the plasticine for creating the dinosaurs and some parts of the environment. For backgrounds I used sheets of paper with printed pictures of jungles. Upon reflecting, I think it was the worst part of the film, because in some moments we can see the edges of the background. For filming I used my phone and for editing Adobe Premier pro and CapCut.

Were there any other films or filmmakers who inspired you?

I was inspired by such movies as Jurassic Park, Walking with Dinosaurs, Planet Dinosaur and Prehistoric Planet. Also, I was really inspired by a YouTube channel called Dead Sound. His animated movies about dinosaurs are really amazing!

Were there any challenges when working on 150 Million Years Ago?

The biggest challenge for me in this project was the time. I shot this film in a very limited amount of time. In fact, I had only 4 days for filming which was really not enough for me considering that it was my first experience with stop motion animation and a lot of things was new to me.

What one piece of advice would you give to someone making their first animated film?

My advice will be to do what you like the most. Don't be afraid to experiment and try something new. But if you are doing animation for the first time do not immediately try to do something grand without having any experience in it.

Start with something simple to discover all the nuances of this process and then when you create more complex projects it will not be a surprise for you. The main thing is to believe in yourself, and you will succeed!

What are you working on next?

At the moment I'm working on Video Advert of X-shot Longshot Blaster. Also, at the end of the year we are going to have a free topic project and I'm going to film another plasticine animation movie about dinosaurs, with a new story, but this time I will consider all the previous mistakes and make the new film much better and more interesting.

Danylo's film will now be showcased to over 300,000 film club members online. All of our Film of the Month films are now on the Into Film YouTube channel. They have secured a £100 Amazon voucher to help further develop their filmmaking. Think you could win Film of the Month? Find out more about how you can enter our ongoing Film of the Month competition.

If you've been inspired by 150 Million Years Ago then make sure to check out the following films:

  • Jurassic Park (1993, PG, 127 mins) engaging for 11+
    An eccentric billionaire opens a theme park where dinosaurs have been brought back to life but things quickly begin to spiral out of control.
  • The Land Before Time (1988, U, 65 mins) engaging for 5-14
    Charming animated tale of a group of young dinosaurs left to fend for themselves after an earthquake separates them from their families.
  • Night at the Museum (2006, PG, 104 mins) engaging for 7-14
    A night watchman at a huge natural history museum discovers that the exhibits spring to life when it gets dark.
  • The Good Dinosaur (2015, PG, 101 mins) engaging for 7-11
    Prehistoric adventure about a lost young dinosaur who must have the courage to face his fears and find his way home.

Special Mention

Each month we highlight one runner up that we think deserves special recognition for their filmmaking achievement. This month we are excited to feature End of Term, a dark comedy from Meadows Primary School Film Club in Shropshire.

A fantastic collision of horror, suspense and comedy!

Film of the Month Judge on '150 Million Years Ago'

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