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Susan Lim

Surgeon, scientist, playwright, lyricist, and creative director of a project centred on the future companionship between humans and inanimates, enabled through the new sciences of synthetic DNA, and the technologies of Robotics, Artificial Intelligence and Quantum Physics, to address the global challenge of loneliness and the need for new approaches to companionship in a future world.


Your project has entered our festival. What is your project about?

Ode to an Inanimate companion is about a fantasy of companionship between a child and a plush inanimate called ALAN. It draws inspiration from the longevity and loneliness that exists in modern society today, set against the backdrop of some of the most incredible new sciences and technologies of our time, which has given rise to a whole new breed of artificially intelligent companions. This animated short is a dedication from a human to an inanimate , an ode to ALAN. 

What are your ambitions with your project?

The team is so excited with this amazing win, of best musical film (short) at the Rome Music Video Awards.

This helps us in our ambition to complete a full length feature film, the Fantasy of Companionship between human and inanimate , as we further develop our theme of synthetic, artificial life living side by side with humans, as companions. 

Our ambition is to share this story, through both music and animation, and ultimately to have a cine concert, with a live orchestra playing to an animation film.

Tell us something about your shooting? What pleasantly surprised you?

  1. This is an animation short, based on a soundtrack the Lim Fantasy of Companionship for piano and orchestra, which we released on streaming platforms and Spotify in 2021. What pleasantly surprised us, was how our animation team drew inspiration from the strength and power of the music storyboard, to create the animation of this fantasy. In our short musical film, it was the music that preceded, an inspired the animation !

What locations did you choose for your project? And why?

  1. While our musicians are mostly from France, and our music was recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London, the animation team is located in Assam, India. The locations didn't matter, and though a continent apart, we coordinated seamlessly, as if we were physically all together, to deliver our story. 

What expression elements did you use in your project? 

The animation adopted mixed genre experimentation. It incorporated rigging-based character expressions, key-frame animation and also traditional 2D in parts. 

How would you characterize your work?

The animation is advanced motion graphics based 2D animation, while the music is a cross genre, orchestral composition. 

For what group of spectators is your music video targeted?

It is really for the public at large, who love orchestral music, and are drawn to a story about our future lives in companionship with AI beings, portrayed with optimism and hope,  through animation. 

At what festivals have you had success? 

We have fortunately, enjoyed wins for 'Ode to an Inanimate Companion'  in film festivals internationally , in the US, London and Europe, and we couldn't be happier to have this award of Best Musical Short Film at the Rome Music Video Awards !

What motivated you to become a filmmaker?

A strong and compelling urge to tell a story based on the arrival, in society, of artificial , synthetic companions, is what drove me to deliver a positive message of hope, calm, and optimism through a musical animation using an adorable plush inanimate, in place of the 'metallic'  embodied AI robots which are the 'face' of these embodied AI systems today. 

What topics do you like to explore in your work?

Animation and musical films , with an undertone of science and technology define the genres that interest me.

What project would you like to shoot one day, and what would it be about?

It would be about space, and the future partnership of human and inanimate, on a mission to find solutions for planet earth's environmental crisis, that may help save the human race.

.How has COVID affected your film life?

Certainly it slowed down our music recordings, as we were not able to gather together to record during the lockdown periods of the pandemic. Also a few members of our team had health issues related to covid, but thankfully, they have recovered fully.

What do you do if you're not thinking about a movie, work, shooting? 

I love the outdoors, and spend a good part of my life in the mountains and the seas.

What are your hobbies?

Swimming, skiing, yoga, reading and storytelling.

What projects do you plan to shoot in the future?

We are working on a Cosmic Rhapsody,  an animation project about a mission to Space. We have recorded the musical soundtrack with a 78-member Orchestra and 36-member Choir and this soundtrack is currently inspiring and driving the animation works. We hope to complete this by year end.

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