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Prix 1987 - 2007

Ars Electronica Linz & ORF Oberösterreich

The Regulator
Philippe Grammaticopoulos

I have been drawing since childhood and I have studied fine arts, specializing in comic books. My brother, who is a car designer, persuaded me of the potential of new technologies.

In order to give life to my characters, I have learnt the 3D animation techniques. One could say my movies are a transposition of my comic books. I try to construct an original graphic and narrative world.

I like universal themes. Science is one of them, with its investigations, its discoveries and the hope it brings for all of us, but also with the ethical problems it brings up. The media often speaks about bioethics and cloning. I have taken up these themes in my movie and I have tried to imagine how it would be, in the near future, if human reproduction become industrialized and turned into chain production. I have created a factory where couples could choose their child, just as we go for shopping for food in a supermarket.

I have followed the reproduction stages: the emission of millions of spermatozoon contained in fertilizing fluid symbolized by the smoke in the introduction shot, the fecundation of the ovule represented by the monumental sculpture in the hall of the building, the gestation with the embryos into their egg-cup, and finally the childbirth with the womb and the toboggan.

In The Regulator, I have chosen black and white in order to make the impression that the characters are dehumanized and to create a very industrialized, drab city.

I work with a computer to create my movies in 3D, but I'm still very close to my 2D experience. That's why I try to flatten the 3D. That is the challenge. I try to take the opposite view of the classic 3D iconography, to get movies that do not appear like 3D or 2D, but like a blend of both.

The 3D was appropriate to the theme of the mass production. The software allows the duplication of a character or an object to infinity, and that in a jiffy! I also wanted a cold and rigid graphic atmosphere to illustrate the control of machines and science over this inhuman world. The 2D is much too human for that.