‘Janie & Jerome’: Producer Eric Weil’s exercise in Storytelling

Eric Weil is an Emmy-Winning producer and indie kids’ filmmaker who has been teaching Storytelling at the School of Visual Arts for six years now. Select shorts from Weil’s seven-part Sesame Workshop series, ‘Janie & Jerome,’ were featured at festivals like the Tribeca Film Festival and the BAMKids Festival in 2005.

During our chat, Weil explained that the idea for ‘Janie’ came from a dream his younger sister described to him when they were growing up. She described her dreams as “movies coming out of her pillow.” Thus the idea for Janie, a little girl that dreams in movie strip pictures, was born.

‘Janie & Jerome’s’ crayon-drawn style was a distinct choice that Weil made as a storytelling strategy. “It was what was true to that world,” he said. See ‘Janie & Jerome’ short, ‘Rain,’ below:


Veteran Artist and Visual Arts Professor, Martin Abrahams Talks History of Amination

Martin Abrahams, a self-proclaimed pioneer of the music video medium and veteran animator, is an enthusiastic advocate of his students at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He has been teaching since 1971, but is also an alumni of SVA, having studied painting and fine arts. Soon, as a way to make a living, Abrahams veered off into the world of animation, a very new field at the time.

When I first visited his classroom on Saturday, which was full of advanced graphic design and animation students, I could barely tell him apart from his pupils. Wearing dark skinny jeans, a plaid green button up and Chuck Taylors, at first glance it’s hard to believe he’s had over 30 years of animation experience.

Here are some of the highlights from our hour-long chat together:

What was working on one of ABC’s first educational children’s programs, ‘Make A Wish,’ (1971-76) like?

That particular show was a very unique show. It incorporated these kinds of little quick animation vignettes. It would mix animation with quick cut stock footage.  It was great. It allowed myself as an animator to be able to work independently, and offer what only I could do in my style, my ideas, storyboarding concept based on a script—and because it was cut so fast, you know, it was young kid quality.

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