If you have not seen the Super Dad, you should make this weekend count with this short story.
A small team of creatives in an animation studio in Lagos, Nigeria, sat over lunch and joked around on a laid-back conversation centered on fatherhood, motherhood, and parenting in today’s time.
This seemingly unassuming Wednesday afternoon office banter spiraled into a script that morphed into a storyboard.
It stood through many months of back and forth even in the face of the Covid-19 lockdown.
Although separated by distance and time, endless Zoom calls, the conversation from that very Wednesday after kept growing and shape-shifting and morphing.
After about 5 months of tweaking, scripting, rigging, animating, lighting, and compositing, Super Dad was born.
It is an animated short film, tackling the idea of traditional fatherhood in Nigeria.
Tackling Tough Issues
Magic Carpet Studios, an innovative storytelling company focused currently on animation and game design released premiered Super Dad on YouTube on 27 November 2020.
The studio uses animation to tackle tough issues in Nigeria and Africa.
From Dear Diary, an animated web series dedicated to telling the stories of African women in the 21st Century; their struggles, victories, and wins, to Corruption: The Musical, a short music video inspired by the late activist and musician – Fela Kuti.
It tackles corruption and its diverse expressions in Nigeria.
This amongst many other shorts from the studio mirrors African realities in the most relatable way.
In our modern world, women are taking more seats at the table across corporate and entrepreneurial spaces.
As a result, there currently are endless conversations and debates on gender roles. Most are on how much Fathers should be involved in babysitting and parenting their own children.
With Super Dad, Magic Carpet Studios hopes to tackle old traditional notions of Fatherhood and Parenting.
The studio presents the subject in a comical yet easily comprehensible way.
Indeed, the new animated short film leans into a soft plot.
It features a first time Dad. He gets the wildest turn of events on an off-work day that should be a peaceful one.
Being A Super Dad
Clearly, dad was not prepared for the task he woke up into – Babysitting.
Imagine all the things that can go right and go wrong here. Complete with endless crying and screeching, shaking rattles, pacifiers, dirty diapers, comical improvs, and lots more.
The director of the animated short told Judah Danjuma Ndanusa that “the subject of Gender roles in our world today is a hot topic.
We wanted to share our view on the subject but we also didn’t want it to be too intense.
“Super Dad was born out of an over-lunch-banter with some colleagues and we wanted it to be easy, relaxed, and simple.
“Traditionally, men here in Nigeria are somehow ‘exempted’ from the domestic “burdens” of parenting.
“We wanted to show men and fathers out there what they were missing in being exempted from this noble task – Being a present Dad is being a super Dad”.
Creating During Lockdown
Basically, the team put together the short story over a 5-month period. It was a small team of dedicated copywriters, animators, illustrators, and storyboard artists.
Other members of the team were concept artists, and sound design artists.
They all embarked on a journey they had never been on before – Working solely from home and living through a global pandemic.
At the very start of the lockdown in Nigeria, Super Dad was kicking off. The news of the lockdown carried so much uncertainty, fear, and despair.
And for the team working on the project, there was a need to stay positive and motivated.
The daily check-ins on each other via video calls on Zoom Characterised the period.
They shared files via slack keeping themselves too busy and engaged to be sucked into the depression that came with the isolation.
Looking back now, Super Dad is a joyful reminder of the benefits that come with taking out time to stay at home.
Also, it highlights the power of devoting energy to creative projects.
and spending meaningful time with close companions, family members, pets, and new plants.
Watch the team talk about the Making of Super Dad HERE
You can connect with Magic Carpet Studios via www.magiccarpet.studio | @magiccarpet_studios |@magiccarpetng (Twitter & Facebook)