Yashar Kassai is the production designer of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem. The team behind the film pushes the boundaries of animation by adding depth, complexity, and messiness to both the visuals and emotional tone of the film. Yashar describes the design of the film as bad.

In today’s episode, No Film School’s GG Hawkins speaks with production designer Yashar Kassai to discuss:

  • What it means to be a production designer in animation
  • Defining the parameters of the world his team built
  • How being a lame hero is refreshing in a world of ultra-serious heroes
  • Why they intentionally designed the whole film to be “imperfect”
  • The value in destroying the film over and over again
  • The power of shaping light to tell your story
  • What Yashar hopes to see in the future of Western animation
  • Feeling both terrified and impressed by the capabilities of AI
  • How animation has room for more complexity

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This episode of The No Film School Podcast was produced by GG Hawkins.