Creating Animated Films for Learning
 
These award winning animated films were created by San Francisco filmmaker J. Arthur Milestone. All of these films take place in the imaginary town of Fearville USA. The educational topics range from public speaking, to health issues for children and "tweens", including drug abuse and AIDS prevention.
HOME ARTIST GRAPHICS POSTERS NEWS SHOW ART CONTACT

Why I Made these Films

Many things inspired me to make these films. I feel animation is great way to explain difficult things that can be scary.  But making a stop motion film, takes patience, and a vision worth pursing. A tragedy gave me a strong sense of purpose, when cancer killed my very good friend. Michael Topalian was 22 when he died in 1980. We were such good friends; his death was shocking to me. I decided to belief that I would see him again later, either in this lifetime or the next. Rather than embrace grief, I felt motivated to do some thing to help prevent cancer. But I could not find a way to express a cancer prevention message until five years later. 

BUTTERFLIES IN FORMATION (Revised in Flash)
BUTTERFLIES IN FORMATION (Original 16mm)

 

Still in school, I began working on my Master's Degree.  After a two of years of classes, I started my thesis, an animated film on Public Speaking.  Some people would rather die than give a speech; it is a terrifying topic for many people.   I titled the film "BUTTERFLIES IN FORMATION ". I almost won the student version of an Oscar. The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences selected it as the region finalist for the northwestern states. I sold hundreds of copies to schools through a distributor.

A social worker asked me to take part in the San Francisco Men's Health study. I explained to her that I was straight and probably wouldn't be much help with the study. She was persistent and explained that for gathering statistical data; she needed men in the area between 20-30. So I reluctantly agreed to participate in the study. This was way out of my comfort zone.

EVERYONE CAN AVOID AIDS PART #1
EVERYONE CAN AVOID AIDS PART #2
It scarred the "be-jesses" out me, but I learned a lot of medical information. My friend Tracy suggested I create an animated film about AIDS. Shortly after this time the AIDS started to become a pandemic. Early on many referred to this new disease as "gay cancer". There were so many scary “unknowns” about this new disease. I pitched Tracy’s idea of an animated film to the San Francisco Dept of Public Health. They liked my speech film, accepted my request for a proposal and funded the project.  It was amazing to work with leading experts at the S F Dept. of Public Health. I also had the honor of working with Mervyn F. Silverman, M.D., MPH the President of AmFAR- the American Foundation for AIDS Research. Elizabeth Taylor helped establish AmFAR just before her good friend Rock Hudson died of AIDS. No doubt, Dr. Silverman was the world’s best person to helping me edit the script. His knowledge of the medical facts was astounding. I felt a fulfilled sense of purpose in helping prevent a disease that causes cancer. Hopefully the work has helped save lives too.
STREET SMARTS PART #1
STREET SMARTS PART #2

 

 

STREET SMARTS PART #3

STREET SMARTS (27 minutes) this animated film depicts fifty clay characters, uses lip-sync, multi-level animations, Original musical score

-Gold Award Charleston International Film Festival

             ----------------             

EVERYONE CAN AVOID AIDS (20 minutes) Thirty-five clay characters with cell animation, lip-sync film, funded in part by the City and County of San Francisco Department of Public Health

(Produced a Japanese version)

-Silver Apple Award, National Educational Film Festival

                 ------------------                   

BUTTERFLIES IN FORMATION (8 minutes) lip-sync animated film student competition -Regional Finalist, Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences

CONTACT

STREET SMARTS © 1996 J. ARTHUR MILESTONE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

EVERYONE CAN AVOID AIDS © 1988 J. ARTHUR MILESTONE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

BUTTERFLIES IN FORMATION © 1983 J. ARTHUR MILESTONE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

To See Other Work by Milestone Visit: www.MilestoneGallery.com