What would it be like to just graduate from film school and suddenly find yourself signed by a major agency, and in pre-production to direct an animated film being exec-produced by film gods Robert Zemeckis and Steven Spielberg? Just ask Gil Kenan, wunderkind director of Monster House, which opens nationwide this weekend. Kenan took time out of his whirlwind schedule during the Seattle International Film Festival to sit down with Cinematical and talk about Monster House and what it's like to be handed a major film right out of film school. Talking with Kenan, it's easy to see why everyone involved with Monster House was willing to take a chance on him -- energy and enthusiasm radiate from him when he speaks about the film. Here's what Kenan had to say:
Cinematical: You're very young – how did you manage to score this gig?
Gil Kenan: The whole thing is very weird, I'm still not really sure – I mean, I know the chronology, but it was really just a lot of luck. I was going to UCLA Film School and studying animation, and I made this weird little thesis film, this 10-minute, black-and-white film that cost me $400 to make, I made it in my kitchen. And the film won an award, it won the Spotlight Award, and it was played at the DGA (Director's Guild of America).