If Anything Happens I Love You is a 2D animated short film written and directed by Will McCormack and Michael Govier. It follows two sad parents as they attempt to come to grips with their daughter's loss in a school shooting. Gilbert Films and Oh Good Productions released the film on Netflix on November 20, 2020.
The film was inspired on an encounter between McCormack and Govier in Griffith Park. Following that, the two spent a whole year creating the film's story, with Youngran Nho acting as animation director and production commencing in 2018. In February, production was finished with the help of Every town for Gun Safety and was inspired by the short film Father and Daughter.
Even If anything Happens I Love You premiered on March 4, 2020, at a private screening hosted by Jayme Lemons, Chelsea Handler, Phil Johnston, Mary McCormack, Rashida Jones, and executive producer Laura Dern in Beverly Hills, at the United Talent Agency. The short gained critical acclaim after its Netflix debut, and it won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 93rd Academy Awards.
If Anything Happens I Love You: What Is the Storyline?
Two parents grow distant from one another after the death of their teenaged daughter. Both parents are watched over by shadows that reflect their actual sentiments, despite their unwillingness to talk to one another in person.
The mother contemplates going into her daughter's former room while the father is out in the yard, but she is stopped by intense anguish and loss.
After discovering she had cleaned her daughter's blouse, the mother begins to cry while doing laundry. She sits near the laundry basket, causing a soccer ball to fall down and open her daughter's room, as well as a record player playing the song “1950.” The mother walks into the room and reunites with her husband.
A shadow of their daughter rises from the record player while “1950” plays in the background, forcing the parents to reminisce events from their daughter's life.
The parents see their daughter grow up in a sequence of flashbacks, including her discovering a passion for soccer, celebrating her tenth birthday, and kissing for the first time.
The girl leaves her parents to go to school in the final flashback. Because this is a recollection, the parents' shadows are aware of what is going to happen and strive to prevent her from entering the premises, but they are unsuccessful.
During a school shooting, the daughter is shot and killed inside the building, and her final text to her parents is “If anything happens, I love you.”
As their shadows grow apart, the daughter's shadow brings the parents closer together, reminding the actual parents of the beautiful times they enjoyed with their daughter when she was alive.
In the present, the daughter's shadow turns into a dazzling light between the shadows of her mourning parents, and the daughter's shadow transforms into a sparkling light between the shadows of her grieving parents.
If Anything Happens I Love You: Is It Based on True Story?
Yes, ‘If Anything Happens I Love You' is inspired by genuine events. The film, however, is not about a specific family. Will McCormack and Michael Govier met numerous parents whose children had died as a result of gun violence in schools while directing the film.
With the hopes of honoring their fortitude and acknowledging their suffering. They also collaborated closely with Every town for Gun Safety, a non-profit dedicated to gun regulation and the prevention of gun violence.
The pair was so impressed with the organization's work that they gave them the screenplay before starting animation work on the film, as well as seeing the completed result for their feedback before releasing it.
Death is a universal event that has had a direct or indirect influence on every one of us. Govier wanted to emphasize the importance of hope in the film since it is an important component of resilience and how we move forward in life.
The parents reminisce about their daughter and imagine what life will be like for her when she grows older. The memories of what they had as a family eventually bring them back together.
For many years, gun violence has been a serious worry in the United States, and it has been the subject of innumerable works of art and entertainment. You may recall Donald Glover's song video ‘This Is America,' which touches on the topic.
A few of episodes of ‘One Tree Hill,' ‘Glee,' and ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer' include school shootings. “If anything happens, I love you,” the daughter's farewell text message to her mother states in this film.
This is identical to the incident in Parkland, Florida in 2018, when parents received farewell texts from their children at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. A total of seventeen people were killed in the shooting.
The video focuses on individuals who endure the death of a loved one and how it affects their relationships. According to research, couples who have lost a child experience emotional alienation and increased conflict.
If the child was the glue that held the marriage together, the couple will have to work harder to rebuild their relationship on new ground. At the start of the video, we see how the parents' shadows represent something different from what they are actually doing.
The darkness and stillness imply that the two have gone through something terrible, but the shadows appear to be bickering. At the conclusion of the film, the parents come to grips with the tragedy and make an effort to reconcile with one another. In the dramatic last shot, which depicts the parents holding, a brilliant figure in the shape of their daughter illuminates the area between their shadows.
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