Minnow Mountain is an animation studio specializing in performance capture rotoscope character animation. Founded in 2012 by industry veterans Craig Staggs and Steph Swope, we are located in Austin, Texas.
With a strong focus on delivering exceptional animation services, we offer a range of creative solutions for television and film producers that includes development and production of feature films, series, shorts, music videos, and project pitches. As Emmy-winning animators Minnow Mountain is proud to attract partnerships with the most prestigious producers in the adult animation industry.
We’ve produced a feature film for PBS, a feature film for Netflix, and made two seasons of television for Amazon Prime. We make short form animation like the opening sequence for Critical Role, or the Black Angels music video Empires Falling. We also produce the online course How To Rotoscope with Craig Staggs.
In 2023 we are expanding the company in two exciting ways: Developing Minnow Mountain original films (to be written and directed by studio co-founder Craig Staggs) and offering 2D cartoon style character animation production services.
Some of our notable co-productions include the critically acclaimed “Tower” for PBS, the groundbreaking series “Undone” for Amazon, and the visually stunning “Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood” for Netflix.
The quality of Minnow Mountain’s work is reflected in ratings and reviews of our projects:
“Tower” – 99% on Rotten Tomatoes
“Undone” – 97% on Rotten Tomatoes
“Apollo 10 1/2” – 91% on Rotten Tomatoes
The success of our film “Tower,” directed by Keith Maitland, earned us the prestigious Emmy for Best Historical Documentary. New York Magazine/Vulture said:
“The sheer beauty of the images gives Tower a surreal quality and drenches it in emotion.”
Additionally, our series “Undone,” helmed by director Hisko Hulsing, has been hailed by Forbes as:
“Indescribably great television.”
The much-anticipated second season of “Undone” on Amazon Prime was described as:
“A hallucinogenic family dramedy that’s made to be seen and experienced, an ouroboros devouring its own tail—and enjoying every bite.”
And Rolling Stone called Richard Linklater’s “Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood”:
“A tribute to Imagination.”
Steph Swope, studio co-founder, partner, and producer, boasts a remarkable 24-year career in the independent film industry, earning recognition as an award-winning producer of animated series and feature films. Steph’s honest and analytical approach to production has laid the foundation for Minnow Mountain’s success.
Craig Staggs, studio co-founder, partner, and director, brings his extensive background in art, theater, and film to the table. Renowned as an acclaimed independent producer and visual artist, Craig is the visionary behind Minnow Mountain’s celebrated rotoscope approach, emphasizing storytelling, character development, and exceptional acting.
Our animation process is driven by creativity and innovation.
The Character Animation Workshop excels in performance capture animation, seamlessly translating an actor’s emotional and physical presence from video to animation, ensuring the emotional depth of the characters we create in collaboration with actors.
The Performance Capture Laboratory continuously pushes the boundaries of production quality through cutting-edge technologies and a dynamic blend of software and digital approaches.
Watch our demo reel to witness the artistry and innovation we bring to every project.
For inquiries and collaboration opportunities, please don’t hesitate to contact us at email@example.com.