Short Created on Facebook to Play Before Planet 51

Live Music, an animated short film made through a ground-breaking collaboration on the social networking site Facebook, will play in theaters in front of TriStar Pictures animated feature film Planet 51 when it opens Nov. 20.

The film is directed by Yair Landau, former president of Sony Pictures Digital, and is the first production from Mass Animation, which is sponsored by Intel Corp.

To make the film, Mass Animation invited artists to animate individual shots from the short in an online collaboration phase that ran from November through January. The shots were voted on by Facebook users and an international jury of animation experts picked the shots that Landau considered for the film.

Animators whose work appears in the film receive onscreen credit and payment. The animators whose work was highly rated by Facebook users received cash awards and prizes from Dell Computer and Intel. Autodesk and Reel FX Entertainment also participated in the project.

The final film is a five-minute CG-animated piece inspired by Romeo and Juliet, with a guitar named Riff falling in love with Vanessa, a classical violin. The music for the characters was provided by Steve Vai as Riff and Ann Marie Calhoun as Vanessa.