Every movie has its inspirations, and "Butterfly Tale" is no exception. In this blog post we'll look at the sources of inspiration that helped shape the story, characters, and themes of the movie. We'll hear from the filmmakers themselves as they share their own personal experiences that influenced the creation of this heart-warming tale.
As a child growing up, Heidi Foss, always thought butterflies were magical. Then suddenly, years later, "The idea for my story first emerged while watching a documentary about the Monarch Butterfly migration. I recognized almost immediately that all the elements of good storytelling were inherent in the Monarch’s real-life migration. Theirs was a tale of challenge and triumph, heartbreak and survival, courage and destiny - with a coming-of-age transformation that emulated a true rite of passage."
Foss brought the script to Producer, Marie-Claude Beauchamp, who immediately felt a deep connection with the story. As someone who raised intellectually disabled children Beauchamp understood the real challenges that they face in their lives. At the time of this first meeting, in 2010, there wasn’t any representation in animation about disabled children. Beauchamp thought that it was high time that their story be told.
Beauchamp’s curiosity was also peaked by the awesomeness of the monarch butterfly. These tiny creatures undertake an amazing migrating year after year for thousands of kilometres. The combination of Foss’ story of marrying a disabled character and the butterfly migration was one that Beauchamp thought important and essential to share.
Foss worked tirelessly to get the tone of the movie just right, " I also recognized that because the stakes involved in their journey were so high, the potential for comedy was immense." And since there had never been an animated story about the monarch butterflies before, Foss believed that, "It was the perfect ‘road movie’."
It took 13 years to bring Butterfly Tale to be the big screen, but Foss never lost hope. " I knew the movie was in good hands when we were pitching the film at the Whistler Film Festival Competition (which we eventually won), and I watched her (Beauchamp) work her magic from across the room... and I knew she was the one that would bring this film to fruition! "