Some of the best animation in the world comes not from the studios, but from the universities. Constrained by budget but not by arbitrary marketing decisions, students are free to create from the heart. Today’s video is Steadfast Stanley, the creation of John Cody Kim. He was a third year student at Calarts (California Institute of the Arts) when he created this film in 2014. Of course there were a number of other participants, but it was John’s vision that brings this heartwarming story of a devoted Pembroke Welsh Corgi reuniting with his beloved young master in the midst of a terrifying zombie apocalypse.

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John made the choice to create Steadfast Stanley using entirely traditional hand drawn animation techniques, because it gave him complete stylistic control over the result. Not many animations can bring tears to the eyes. This one hits the mark.