Anacronte: Interview with Director Emiliano Sette

Emiliano Sette is a director, scriptwriter, producer and the creative force behind "Anacronte" an award winning animated short film.

Emiliano Sette is a director, scriptwriter and producer. He held the title of scriptwriter for the global television series “The Clown PLIM: A Hero of the Heart” which was aired by Disney Junior in 22 countries in Latin America, Discovery Familia USA, and Italy. The series won many awards.

Emiliano was also the writer and director behind “REFLEJOS” an animated short film that was the Winner of the INFANCIAS award (INCAA). Another one if his films, “Noticiero,” won the Competition for the International Development and Promotion of Animation Projects that was Organized by INCAA. He is also the writer and director of the animated series “MILI” and “Nafragos” which both won several awards.

Despite his lauded career, Emiliano’s most internationally known work is arguably a short film titled “Anacronte” which he wrote, directed, and produced. The CGI 3D animated short film has won more than 150 festivals and more than 300 selections worldwide.

“Anacronte” is a very abstract and experimental film that focuses on real-life problems that face human beings. Told via animation, the film comments on serious setbacks people face including war, infidelity, serious injury, and depression. The message of the film is that, when confronted with strife, we can either stay strong and keep going, it sink into a deep depressive fog.

Emiliano recently discussed this film and his career via an exclusive interview.

Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you initially get interested in becoming an animator and how did you break into the industry?

Emiliano Sette (ES): I´m not specifically an animator, I began in this world writing the scripts of an animation tv show for kids. That was my first contact with the animation process and there I´d the possibility to see the industry´s movement. That experience was a big learning and a door to start walking this route. After that experience writing tv episodes of animation shows for many years, I was Director of the original projects of Magic Gardens animation studios in Buenos Aires meanwhile I created my own studio ¨Mr Bug¨ that I direct actually with Alejandro Dajil.

ANACRONTEMM: How did you think up your theme of “ Anacronte” and how did you decide to mix abstract concepts with real-world issues?

ES: “Anacronte” was an original concept of Raúl Koler, who I knew through a common friend. He read me the idea like tale and I understood that I had to front me the possibility and the challenge to do a big project. Sometimes we have the chance to make big stuff, but “Anacronte” had heart. The story talks fundamentally about pain and we needed to find the character to represent the circumstances that start to happen before that our reality change for a dark event that crashes with us. Each sorcer in the crag that shot an arrow in the film, it´s a metaphor for our pains.

MM: Was it strange to use animated characters to tell some pretty somber stories?

ES: We are accustomed to thinking of animation as a genre to speak kids, but when you connect the virtuosic of animation with a dramatic story with adults topics as violence, sex, death, love… The cinematography language finds a new channel to say. Without hesitation, the animation of Anacronte was a big challenge, but I think give us the possibility to show an emotion a metaphor, or a sensation, anyway. I think that stories find their way to go out and the filmmakers we are all the time trying to give them the best platform or rather, the platform possible.

MM: What prompted you to focus on a film about overcoming challenges by staying mentally strong?

ES: Fundamentally the fact of “Anacronte” is a story over time, with a topic inherent to the humans throughout their existence. We landing in this world fighting for breath, crying, absolutely vulnerable and there it begins the challenges that bring the life, pull out each arrow. These are the things that move me in life, the guy that has to go ahead when his wife died, or a little kid that burns in heavy circumstances and has to grow up and survive by his own mains. Without hesitation, this prompted me to tell about this.

ANACRONTEMM: The “evil army” in this film was such a visually striking image, so how did you come up with them?

ES: When we beginning to think about Anacronte´s character with Raúl we had the challenge to find a design that refers nothing to reality, without similarity with an object of real life. We work the characters with Nelson Luty and Pablo Olivera, both fantastic artists. Anacronte and the sorcerers of evils were the hardest because they represent something immaterial, but with particularity become bows and arrows for shooting their evil. The esthetic of acrylics paint gave us the texture to make more organic the look and feel that we needed.

MM: How long did it take to complete this film?

ES: Around two years and a half working in co-production between Argentina and Mexico.

MM: What did it feel like to win so many awards?

ES: We are still very excited and surprised, we had great expectations but we never imagine the scope and the reception that Anacronte has actually. We are very glad for the festival’s support and magazine-like yours that give visibility to our movie. It´s happened a lot of things around Anacronte that we never expect. Particularity 2021 will be a year that we never forget.

MM: How did you get involved with Rock the Shorts and what was your experience with them like?

ES: We landing in each festival with the illusions that find new audiences is practically the unique opportunity to screening a short film and share your project with people far away from you. In Rock the shorts we won the best Animation and as with each award, it generates a resonance in others that start to get closer. This virtuous circle is the most important for the short film´s life.

MM: What has been the highlight of your career so far?

ANACRONTEES: When I was 26 years old a big studio in Buenos Aires contracts me as director, and when I start the producer told me, we have a meeting in Disney in a week, we need to present something because is a unique opportunity for the company. I got that they give me two weeks and with a creative team we create a new IP for a tv series, a bible, and the script of the first episode. We sat in front of the lead of the acquisition of Disney Latinamerica and we sold de project. That moment moved something in me, clean some fears because I understood that all of this is just a big game and sometimes we play a role and sometimes another role. The most important is to clean the fears and play the game. Definitely, that was a great highlight in my career. On another hand, I feel that Anacronte is creating a new and big plot point.

MM: How do you hope your career evolves and expands from here?

ANACRONTEES: I don´t know exactly. Many things are happening of different natures but something that I enjoy really is that we are working with people worldwide, with projects that are a greats challenges for me. Cross some lines is uncomfortable because appear new pressures and a lot to learn. Now we are beginning to work with big studios like HBO, Warner Media, among others and we know they are a great platform for our projects and for our professional grow up.

MM: What events, projects, or films are coming up soon, and is there anything else that you would like to discuss?

ES: At this moment we are in pre-production of a new short film with Raúl Koler, a sci-fi series with Alejandro Dajil and working in new ways for the Anacronte´s concept.


Emiliano is currently the Executive Director of MR BUG, an audiovisual content studio based in Argentina. To learn more, visit his official website or follow him on Instagram via @emiliano_sette