Cancer is a wretched, vile thing that can turn a person’s world upside down. When Alexis was only three, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia after doctors noticed red spots on her skin. In the face of months of chemotherapy and medication, she chose not to be a scared little girl. She chose to be a brave little princess.
When the Make-A-Wish foundation approached Alexis and asked if she had any requests, she simply said she wanted to create a cartoon that would inspire other pediatric cancer patients to be strong, even when they're afraid. Make-A-Wish reached out to us to help, and we immediately embarked on a nine month journey to craft Alexis’s tale.
From the very beginning, Alexis played a crucial role. After a series of conversations with her, we scripted a narrative that captured the emotional story of Alexis’s struggles with leukemia and how she overcame it through the help of friends and family.
Storyboards, backgrounds, character creation, and animation followed shortly after. We designed characters based around real people from Alexis’s life, even printing them out and letting her fine-tune the details. She was brought into to record VO, lending her voice to our heroine. As a way of saying thank you, we gave her a 3D-printed replica of the magic wand used by the animated Alexis to send Kemia (the villain) away.
Along the way we were surprised at every turn by the compassion and generosity of people who wanted to help bring Alexis’s story to life. From the composer, sound engineers, and artists who volunteered to help in their downtime. We were also fortunate enough to have Jamie Chung (Once Upon a Time, Big Hero 6) be the voice of our narrator.
After putting the final touches on Alexis’s animated 3:40 featurette, it premiered at a special red-carpet event held at the renowned Cinerama theater in downtown Seattle. Alexis appeared in a hand-picked dress and received the royal treatment, providing a fairytale ending to a very special project.