Pixels (2010 film)

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For the feature film adaptation, see Pixels (2015 film).
Pixels short film.jpg
Directed by Patrick Jean
Produced by Johnny Alves
Benjamin Darras
Written by Patrick Jean
Cinematography Matias Boucard
One More Production
Release dates
  • April 2010 (2010-04)
Running time
2 minutes
Country France

Pixels is a 2010 French animated short film written and directed by Patrick Jean. It is about an invasion of New York City by classic 8-bit video games, such as Space Invaders, Pac-Man, Tetris, Arkanoid, and others.

The film won the Annecy Crystal for Best Short Film at the 2011 Annecy International Animated Film Festival.[1]


A man throws away an old television set on a New York City street, but after he walks away the TV turns on and releases a multicolored cloud of pixels. The cloud floats through the city, then breaks off and becomes tremendous versions of classic 8-bit video games, that all start destroying the city. Whenever something in the city is hit or affected by the pixel creatures, it becomes pixelated too.

  • Aliens from Space Invaders attack cars, which are turned into pixels and crumble.
  • Pac-Man is shown traveling down a subway map, where all the stations look like white pellets from the game. As he eats each one, we see the real station disappear. (The first station he eats has a sign on it, a giant cherry)
  • Next, giant Tetris blocks fall from the sky, stacking onto geometric buildings. When one floor is completed, it disappears.
  • A swarm of paddles from Arkanoid play against the bricks of the Brooklyn Bridge, slowly destroying it.
  • At the top of the Empire State Building is Donkey Kong, who launches huge barrels into the streets below.
  • Frogger is seen crossing a busy New York highway, he is the only video game creature that does not cause any damage.

A variety of company logos of the era appear in advertisements: Commodore Business Machines and Psygnosis on subway entrances, and Atari on a skyscraper.

At the end, a giant bomb appears in the streets. When it explodes, the shock wave slowly turns the whole city in pixels, then it spreads throughout the world, and soon Earth is nothing but a giant pixel. The end of the credits are presented as a high score.

Feature film[edit]

Main article: Pixels (2015 film)

Columbia Pictures and Happy Madison Productions are developing a feature film based on the short film.[2] Tim Herlihy and Tim Dowling wrote the script,[3][4] which Chris Columbus will direct.[5] Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Josh Gad, Peter Dinklage, Brian Cox, Ashley Benson and Michelle Monaghan will star in the film.[6][7][8]

The feature film started principal photography in Toronto, Canada on June 2, 2014, using downtown streets decorated to resemble New York City.[9]


  1. ^ Hopewell, John; Keslassy, Elsa (2011-06-11). "'Rabbi's Cat' wins Annecy best feature". Variety. Retrieved 2011-06-12. 
  2. ^ Fleming Jr, Mike (12 May 2010). "Sony, Happy Madison Playing With Viral Sensation ‘Pixels’". deadline.com. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  3. ^ Kit, Borys (10 November 2010). "Happy Madison Hires Writer for 'Pixels' Feature". hollywoodreporter.com. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  4. ^ Sneider, Jeff (16 July 2012). "Tim Dowling to rewrite vidgame-themed ‘Pixels’". variety.com. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  5. ^ Sneider, Jeff (30 May 2013). "Chris Columbus in Talks to Direct ‘Pixels’ for Sandler and Sony". thewrap.com. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  6. ^ Sneider, Jeff (26 February 2014). "Adam Sandler to Star in Sony’s Big-Budget Video Game Movie ‘Pixels’". thewrap.com. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  7. ^ "Game of Thrones’ Star Peter Dinklage Joins Cast of Adam Sandler’s ‘Pixels’". variety.com. 28 March 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  8. ^ Kit, Borys (4 April 2014). "Michelle Monaghan Joining Adam Sandler in 'Pixels'". hollywoodreporter.com. Retrieved 5 April 2014. 
  9. ^ Christine. "Pixels". Onlocationvacations.com. Retrieved 2014-06-04. 

External links[edit]