Bryant and Keane’s ‘Dear Basketball’ is a visual treat

The former Los Angeles Lakers star, Kobe Bryant penned down a poem Dear Basketball for The Players Tribune in 2015. The poem is now turned into an animated short film which won accolades and the Oscar in 2018. “I feel better than winning championships. This is crazy, man,” Bryant said on winning the Oscars. Bryant accepted his Oscar as executive producer for the best animated short film. The short film is an inspiration from Kobe Bryant’s self-made poem he wrote while retiring from NBA after 2015-16 season. The legendry animator Glen Keane spent 37 years at Disney and animated iconic characters like Ariel from The Little Mermaid and The Beast from Beauty and the Beast. He served as a mentor to a senior animation studio and gave the animation world an entire generation of talent. He got his game right with the stupendous work, Dear Basketball. Kean and Bryant are legends in their respective fields and make an artistic pair. Keane personifies the essence of the hand drawn art with 2D animation, bringing the beauty of motion to his projects. The film is crafted beautifully with the elements of sketching and playing sport going together hand in hand. The unquestionable animation technique used is making the Oscar winner all the more appealing. With sketching art taken as the focal point, it implements well with the powerful sport actions, giving audience a visual treat. Motion capture is the best technique while focusing on a specific art form. The lines drawn are perfectly synced and animated with the voice of Bryant in the background, giving goosebumps as one goes through the entire film. The animator felt that CG would not have given the same impact as that of hand drawn sketch. It was a very realistic animation and so was done in live-action. Google’s executive producer Karen Dufilho said, “I want to tell stories. I want to tell stories in animation. And the first thing I want to do is write Dear Basketball, which is a thank you letter. But, but I want it to be something that not just kids, but everybody, can see.” Directed by Glen Keane and produced by Gennie Rim, Dear Basketball is an apt winner for the Academy Awards. The finely drafted film is capturing hearts of Bryant’s fans and artists all over. The collaborative effort from Believe Entertainment Group Kobe and Glen Keane Productions is a well done motion art.