Over 2 years ago, Nate Niederkorn and I sat down to write a rock song about a princess that accidentally drank a glass of poison. It came together relatively quickly, and we soon had a rough draft of a 13-minute rock opera.
We liked it a lot. No, that's not quite accurate. We ADORED it. But there was one big problem:
It was clearly never going to get get made.
The story was too big, the song was too long, and while our video production budgets are bigger now than they were back when I was asking friends to film me moping down the street in Me duele, it still was beyond anything we could reasonably afford.
Still, we didn't give up. I spent the early months of Covid lockdown talking with every animation studio who would even take a meeting. I'm not exaggerating when, after explaining what we wanted to make, we were laughed out of more than a few Zooms. Plus, it was a hard time to find animators for even small projects. They were all being snatched up by larger corporations in the early days of Covid since they couldn't film in person.
But right when I was close to giving up, I happened across two brothers in Bogotá, Colombia who didn't speak a lick of English. Andés and Sebastián Luna met with me, heard the song, and they immediately became obsessed. They understood exactly what we wanted to make, and we geeked out on a shared love of fantasy, fairy tales, and traditional 2D animation.
I hired them in January, 2021.
For the next 26 months, Andrés, Sebastian, Juan Carlos Pinilla and I worked to bring the story to life, and today we finally release El antídoto del dragón.
Let me be clear. Everything about this rock opera is utterly impractical.
It's 13 minutes long, which is far too long for most Spanish classes. It ended up being even more expensive than we feared. Plus, it took two years to make, which is just a ridiculously long production cycle.
But I know one thing: At a time when everyone was locking down, when the world seemed to be losing its mind, we buried our heads in the work and made this crazy story.
I know that I kind of went quiet these last couple of years. Like so many others, I also struggled with some severe anxiety, and for reasons I'll probably never fully understand, I just needed to get off of social media and disappear for awhile.
But you were never out of my mind. As we meticulously created the most challenging story of our careers, you were always there. We made this for you. We made this for your students.
We hope you enjoy El antídoto del dragón, which we officially release today.