The Los Angeles Puppetry Guild was formed in 1956 by a group of educators, historians and enthusiasts. They were chartered in 1957 and are now one of the largest puppetry guilds in America.
Their mission is to share, promote and advance the art of puppetry.
As part of a 48 hour film-making challenge incorporating an action - Dance, an item - Window and the theme of Halloween, Mark created a folk/horror tale set in the ruins of St Albans Nunnery using paper puppets.
It is Samhain. The pious traveller Hrodwyn upon seeing the red cloaked figure of death is overcome with visions of a pagan sun god dancing away the light of his faith, piercing the realm of his life and death. Not all journeys are expected when the veil is thin on Samhain.
The film was shown at the Puppetzilla Puppet Slam and featured in the 48hr Halloween Puppet Film Project winning the award for Best use of theme 'Halloween
THE VEIL IS THIN
Inspired by the novel VIOLET by Leslie Tate
A Japanese style fable about faith, love, death and the afterlife from Award Winning Theatre On Wax.
It was full of light and I walked down a tunnel, figures were holding me. When I looked up into the night sky it was violet.
Facing death Beth discovers a world where light and shadow come together, where the dark makes the truth hard to see, of violet and a journey on an ocean to a world without a sky where love can be eternal and life can be lived more fully than ever.
There was no sun, there was no moon only falling blossom of the night cherry.
The realms and lives (and afterlife) of the characters will be brought to life using a combination Bunraku, Kuruma Ningyo and shadow puppetry.
Heaven's Rage is based on the novel of the same name by author Leslie Tate.
Leslie Tate's memoir is by turns an elegy for a lost childhood, a tribute to the power of literature and a demand for the right to identity in world that turns too easily on those who differ from the conventional.
Theatre On Wax's short film is a visionary reinterpretation of the autobiography as pure cinema. At times dreamlike and otherworldly and at others beautiful yet elegiac.
Semi Finalist at Weird Wednesdays DE, Germany, Nominated best film Bute Street Festival UK, Nominated Best Cinematography - James Melrose, Best LGBTQI Subject and Winner of Best Experimental Film at the Jim Thorpe Film Festival, USA, Nominated Best Cinematic Writing - Mark Crane & Leslie Tate Blackbird Film Fest, Cortland USA.
The film features music from Minnie Birch and Elliott Kendall, Cinematography from James Melrose, Starring Leslie Tate, Daniel Dunn Production Design from Sheelagh Frew Crane, VFX by Amin El Zamor, Sound Design by Jason Pinches and mixed by Ben Beheshty.
OTOKO TO KITSUNE
(The Man & the Fox)
Double Fantasy 45RPM was Mark's return to the creative arts after a 7-year hiatus.
Mark built his own puppets and shot and edited over a three day period.
In the style of the great parables it tells the story of a lonely man seeking love. Whilst out hunting he accidentally shoots a fox.
However, the fox is not a fox. She is a celestial being and they fall in love.
The epic poem 'The Argonautica' by Apollonius of Rhodes in the 3rd century consists of thrilling encounters and it survives in various forms.
Taking inspiration from the tale of Jason & the Argonauts this modern experimental lo-fi retelling retains many of the elements and encounters but twists the story to reveal a deadly journey of youth, violence and psychological horror.