Before anyone else can get to work on our movies, Story artists are busy figuring out how to transform a written script into the particularly visual language of animated filmmaking.
Every story artist will draw different chunks of the script - bringing humor and specificity to the words on the page. They then "pitch" it to the Director. Hopefully, the director laughs. Hopefully, if the directory laughs, it was a comedic moment being pitched. If not, it’s literally “back to the drawing board” (except that everyone draws into computers).
The basic elements of the story drawings show camera angles and sequence staging, but most importantly for animated features, the challenge is adding humor and character to the story.
Story artists constantly think of ways to “punch up” the script. While many scripts deserve a good beating, that’s not what “punch up” means — it simply means we try to make it as gut-busting and hilarious as possible. Thousands of jokes will be pitched during this process. If one of yours actually makes it into the final movie, give yourself a pat on the back.