A 14 years old Preston Mutanga hired to animate LEGO scene “Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse”

The remarkable contribution of Preston Mutanga may not be widely recognized, but his work has undoubtedly reached the screens of anyone who has contributed to the staggering $235 million box office success of “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.”

Hailing from Toronto, Canada, Mutanga, a talented 14-year-old, made his industry debut as an animator for “Across the Spider-Verse” after impressing producers Chris Lord and Phil Miller with his shot-for-shot recreation of the film’s trailer using LEGO blocks. This extraordinary achievement opened doors for Mutanga that most newcomers can only dream of.

Mutanga shared his LEGO remake of the “Across the Spider-Verse” trailer on Twitter on January 2, catching the attention of Lord and Miller, who are well-versed in crafting LEGO-inspired sequences as the directors of 2014’s “The LEGO Movie.” When the team decided to incorporate a LEGO universe scene in “Across the Spider-Verse,” they knew Mutanga was the perfect fit.

Upon discovering that the incredible creation was the work of a 14-year-old, Miller expressed his astonishment, stating, “This looks incredibly sophisticated for a nonadult, nonprofessional to have made.” The impact of Mutanga’s work was far-reaching, impressing not only the esteemed directors but also some of the most talented animators in the world.

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Mutanga’s passion for animation started at a young age when his father introduced him to Blender, a 3D software that instantly captivated him. He took the initiative to teach himself various techniques by extensively watching YouTube tutorials.

Despite being located in Toronto, Mutanga dedicated several weeks to animating a LEGO sequence for “Across the Spider-Verse.” Through regular video meetings with Miller, he received valuable feedback and guidance to refine his work.

Reflecting on the experience, Mutanga highlighted the significance of the feedback process and the considerable transformations that occur during the journey from initial concepts to the final product.

Lord emphasized the inspiration behind “The LEGO Movie” itself, which stemmed from individuals creating films with LEGO bricks in their own homes. This notion resonated with the core message of “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” that heroes can emerge from anywhere. Mutanga’s story embodies this idea, as a young talent inspired by a film that was itself inspired by creators like him.

While Mutanga continues his high school education, his collaboration with the masterminds behind “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” brings him one step closer to his ultimate aspiration of becoming a full-time animator. Working with the creators of a cinematic masterpiece he adored was a dream come true, and the invaluable knowledge and connections he gained will undoubtedly shape his future endeavors in the world of animation.

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