A drawing of a young boy with an oversized head, a character from BLA BLA, an interactive website produced by Vincent Morisset in 2011.

Press Releases & Media Kits

BLA BLA by Vincent Morisset (NFB) morphs from Web production into interactive installation at the Gaîté Lyrique in Paris

Press release


BLA BLA: Norman McLaren's spirit in interactive mode.”
– Isabelle Regnier, blogger at lemonde.fr

Montreal, March 29, 2012 – Vincent Morisset's interactive tale BLA BLA, a National Film Board of Canada (NFB) production, has morphed into BLA BLA: The Installation, and is settling in for a run at the Gaîté Lyrique in Paris from April 7 to May 6, where it will offer an innovative interactive experience to the Parisian public.

Vincent Morisset, Quebec filmmaker and interactivity pioneer—world-famous for his innovative work with the band Arcade Fire—will be available for interviews in Paris from March 30 to April 10 to present the latest version of his work.

The BLA BLA installation was specially adapted for the Gaîté Lyrique, where it occupies the entire fourth floor. The public is invited to walk through the installation, going from chapter to chapter and physically interacting with the work on different surfaces: the walls, the floor or the screens. Since it was founded in 2011 by the Mairie de Paris to explore all forms of the digital arts and contemporary music, the Gaîté Lyrique has positioned itself as a unique institution in the multi-faceted cultural landscape  of new media, with its influence expanding in France and abroad. Always on the lookout for the best in international innovation and experimentation, the Gaîté Lyrique has invited Vincent Morisset to give BLA BLA even more exposure.

In the words of Vincent Morisset, “This installation will open up new possibilities and create relationships among many users. In my opinion, extending BLA BLA's physical space will inspire more people to develop a new way of thinking about this new medium and let them experience storytelling and filmmaking in an entirely different way.”

“This stage in the development of BLA BLA represents another example of the NFB's leadership role in the production of interactive works in North America and Europe, as demonstrated by its partnership with the Gaîté Lyrique, one of the leading, influential centres of digital culture that welcomes exploration on a local, national or international level,” said Monique Simard, Director General of the NFB's French Program. 

The installation was presented at the renowned International Film Festival Rotterdam in January and at the end of February at the Japan Media Arts Festival, where it garnered a prize for excellence. Its Web version recently took the SXSW Interactive Award for Art at the prestigious South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, and an Entertainment Award in the annual Communication Arts Interactive Competition, held by the best-known US graphic arts magazine.

Launched in May 2011, BLA BLA is a “film for computer,” an adventure controlled interactively by users. Developed by AATOAA and produced by Hugues Sweeney at the NFB, it is available at nfb.ca/blabla. Each chapter depicts an aspect of human communication: learning a language, making small talk, social exchanges, expressing feelings, etc. The entire work features a one-of-a-kind soundscape that relies on controlled randomness: the music and words are broken into fragments and then scored through programming. 

Another NFB production has also achieved great success in France: Bar Code barcode.tv. The NFB's first mobile and interactive Web doc, co-produced with ARTE France, won the FIPA d'Or Grand Prize for Web Creation at the International Festival of Audiovisual Programs in Biarritz (FIPA) in January.

BLA BLA Installation Team

Vincent Morisset: Direction, Animation and Image Compositing
Caroline Robert: Visual Design and Animation ( caroline-robert.com)
Philippe Lambert: Sound, Music and Voice ( black-mantra.com)
Édouard Lanctôt-Benoit: Programming and Technology ( edouardlb.com)

About the NFB

Canada's public producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada creates interactive works, social-issue documentaries, auteur animation and alternative dramas that provide the world with a unique Canadian perspective. The NFB is developing the entertainment forms of the future in groundbreaking interactive productions, while pioneering new directions in 3D stereoscopic film, community-based media, and more. It works in collaboration with emerging and established filmmakers, digital media creators and co-producers in every region of Canada, with Aboriginal and culturally diverse communities, as well as partners around the world. Since the NFB's founding in 1939, it has created over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 4 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies. Over 2,000 NFB productions can be streamed online, at the NFB.ca Screening Room as well as via partnerships with the world's leading video portals, while the NFB's growing family of apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV delivers the experience of cinema to Canadians everywhere.



Nadine Viau
NFB Publicist
Telephone: 514-496-4486
Cell: 514-458-9745
E-mail: n.viau@nfb.ca

Lily Robert
Director, Corporate Communications, NFB
Telephone: 514-283-3838
Cell: 514-296-8261
E-mail: l.robert@nfb.ca