A sweet tale of intergenerational friendship and inspiration will be available to stream Thursday, December 17, when DreamWorks Animation short To: Gerard arrives on NBCUniversal’s Peacock platform. Written and directed by Taylor Meacham, the film was created as part of the studio’s Shorts Program, produced by Jeff Hermann with music by Layla Minoui, production design by Raymond Zibach and editing by James Ryan. The film’s head of character animation was Pierre Perifel, and Nico Marlet handled character design.
Synopsis: Toward the doldrum end of his shift, Gerard, a spritely mailman, nimbly sorts envelopes and packages with the flick of a wrist. Despite working in a post office all his life, Gerard has dreamed of one day finding his audience as a famous magician like his childhood hero. With effortless dexterity that accompanies mastery, this delightfully overgrown kid practices magic every day with a special coin … a gift from The Great Vivonti.
When an inquisitive young girl named Jules wanders upon his practiced routine, she’s dazzled by his talents. With the help of his cherished coin, Gerard charms his first-ever audience member with an impromptu magic show. In this moment, two artists — separated by decades — unknowingly set off a chain reaction that will change both of their lives forever.
“To: Gerard comes from the place of just how much my father means to me,” says Meacham. “My dad’s my best friend and close to that age where he should be retiring. It’s hard to see someone you care about so much about at that point in life who should be just relaxing and take vacations. That’s what I want for him, but he’s not that guy. Dad’s attitude is: ‘As long as I can save five dollars to give to my kids to go follow their dreams, nothing else matters.’ This film is a love letter to him, thanking him for everything he’s given to us.”
Read more about the film in Ramin Zahed’s story for the June ’20 issue of Animation Magazine here.