Klaatu (band) - Animated Film Project

Animated Film Project

In 1977 Al Guest and Jean Mathieson of Rainbow Animation were commissioned by Capitol Records to create the first animated rock video of the Klaatu song "A Routine Day". They shot the band members but obscured their identities by rotoscoping them and turning them into drawings. This video ran on Don Kirshner's Rock Concert and subsequently played as a short in Los Angeles on the same bill as Animal House.

Following that, Guest and Mathieson got permission from Capitol Records to create a vehicle for Klaatu's songs. They wrote and directed a half-hour television special they titled Happy Hew Year Planet Earth, hoping that it would get yearly broadcasts as an alternative to Christmas specials. New Year's Eve was Mathieson's birthday. Again the group Klaatu was photographed and rotoscoped, with an astronaut wraparound created to connect the six Klaatu songs. Although the project was completed, Guest and Mathieson were burned by their Canadian film investment group and wound up financing it themselves. They never released it.

The only example of the project that has ever seen the light of day is the video for "A Routine Day", which was the original broadcast rock video. However, in 2005 the group permitted the film to be screened in its uncompleted state at the KlaatuKon convention in Toronto.

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