La Nostalgia del Sr. AlambreParauszek

"The Bug Trainer"

Prod. 2008

Directed by Marek Skrobecki (Poland), Linas Augutis, Rasa Miskinyte, Donatas Ulvydas (Lithuania)

The Bug Trainer is a para-documentary about the life and works of Ladislas Starewicz. Starewicz was a pioneer of animation and the father of Polish stop-motion. His 1909 film, The Battle of the Stag Beetles, is considered to be the first Polish animated film.

Two puppets were designed for the animated part of The Bug Trainer: the Beetle and the Lioness.
The Queen Lioness was a character taken directly from Starewicz's Tale of the Fox, and was said to be his favourite puppet.

She was recreated in smaller scale, 50 cm high, based on archive materials, copies of designs and photographs. My part was to apply the fur and finishing, and to sew the costume. Sources depicting the original were few, and it was difficult to recreate the Queen's richly decorated gown and jewellery.
For the purpose of the film, a second character, designed by Marek Skrobecki, was created: the Beetle, who adores and courts the Queen.

He appears as a reference to the first stars of Starewicz's animations- real insects which he used in his Battle of the Stag Beetles.

However, the film's Beetle is a modern, synthetic transposition and symbol of the original puppets.