EXCLUSIVE: FAST channel DOCUMENTARY+ has picked up worldwide rights to Ninety-Five Senses days after the film earned an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Short.
Ninety-Five Senses, produced by the “MAST” accelerator program of the Salt Lake Film Society, is directed by Jerusha and Jared Hess. The fictional film, inspired by nonfiction, tells “the story of a man facing his own mortality while reflecting on the grave mistakes of his youth. This is juxtaposed against the beauty of life and how we perceive it. ‘It may be that in the next life, we’ll have ninety-five senses,’ he muses. The film comprises five scenes, with connective vignettes, animated in six distinctive styles.”
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It premieres today on DOCUMENTARY+, which describes itself as the “leading documentary FAST channel and streaming platform.”
“The striking visual appeal and great storytelling of Ninety-Five Senses instantly attracted us to this short,” said Justin Lacob, head of DOCUMENTARY+. “We look forward to bringing this animated short inspired by non-fiction to audiences on DOCUMENTARY+.”
Director Jerusha Hess commented, “All of us on Ninety-Five Senses were going for something a little bit more than pure entertainment. DOCUMENTARY+ gets that, and they’ll use the film as a springboard into a tough topic.”
Ninety-Five Senses has won more than a dozen awards at film festivals around the world, including the Grand Jury Award for Best Animation at the Florida Film Festival. The film is directed by Jerusha Hess (Austenland, Napoleon Dynamite, Don Verdean) and Jared Hess (Minecraft, Napoleon Dynamite, Nacho Libre), written by Chris Bowman and Hubbel Palmer (Minecraft, Masterminds, Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life) and featuring the vocal talents of Tim Blake Nelson (Nightmare Alley, Watchmen, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs).
Animators include Gabriela Badillo, Daniel Bruson, Michael Grover, Dominica Harrison, Dallin Penman, Jared Mathews, and KC Tobey, with their teams consisting of Adriana Arvizu, Tamara Cruz, Melissa Lopez, Cristina Lugo, Ruben Morales, Enrique Sañudo, and Scott McHenry.
The film’s producers are MAST co-founders Miles David Romney, a veteran Broadway investor and co-producer (Moulin Rouge!, Hadestown, Life of Pi, The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window) and managing partner of V42 Venture Studio Fund Tori A. Baker, CEO of Salt Lake Film Society and Board VP of The Cinema Foundation. Executive producers now include Justin Lacob and Bryn Mooser of XTR/DOCUMENTARY+.