A few years back, in 1998, I worked at ILM as a story artist on the (later cancelled) CGI FRANKENSTEIN project, directed by Dave Carson & Brent Maddock. I tried my hand at creepy creature design, but was ultimately betrayed by my goofy cartoonist roots. The directors burst into spontaneous gales of laughter at the sight of my attempts at creature design, even when I was trying to be scary.. It wasn’t the first time in my life that I learned that if people are going to laugh at you anyway it’s best to act like you meant it, and thereafter I went for goofy ideas in an attempt to deliberately make the directors chuckle. On that score, POLLY-CAT was a hit (especially when pitched in a Gilbert Gottfried ‘why am I not surprised‘ voice).
In a happy epilog, this goofy Chihuahua/Giraffe critter, drawn to amuse the Frankenstein directors, was eventually used in “WORK IN PROGRESS”, a short film made by the ILM development unit in 2000 as a sort of R&D project to demo some of their new abilities/software etc. at SIGGRAPH.
FRANKENSTEIN was a great project with a stellar crew of all-star artists. I do wonder though if what we were trying to do was even possible at such an early stage of CGI.