"'Steampunk' is a celebration of mechanisms and an idolization or faith in machines as a future, which emphasizes analog over digital. But in 9, since the world has fallen to pieces it's become all analog. 'Stitchpunk'-- a term which I first heard coined from a fan of the short film-- fittingly describes the 9 characters' aesthetic, in what they physically area and in that they have been designed not as toys but to survive in a barren landscape." ~Director Shane Acker
1 -Voiced by Christopher Plummer, 1 is the Scientist’s first creation. As the elder, he is the self-declared leader of the group. He is clever and sly, but also domineering, quick-tempered, and threatened by the new arrival of 9, whose higher intellect leads him to question authority.
2 -Voiced by Martin Landau, 2 is a kind but now frail inventor and explorer who embodies the Scientist’s strong creative spirit. An inquisitive personality, 2 is fearless. Affectionately described as a “salty old dog”.
3 & 4 -Communicating visually, not verbally, 3 and 4 are twins who voraciously catalogue everything they can see and find, recording and building a massive database for the group of the world that surrounds them and the history that led up to their creation.
Animation Director Joe Ksander says, "Since 3 and 4 have no dialogue at all, it was up to the animators to come up with those performances entirely; for those two characters we were inspired by meerkats and silent film actors.
5 -Voiced by John C. Reilly, 5 is a caring, nuturing engineer - the loyal, big-hearted “common man” who always tries to play the peacemaker. He is also an apprentice of 2, with whom he shares a special bond.
6 -Voiced by Crispin Glover. Although reclusive and eccentric, his bursts of artistic inspiration through drawings made from his pen nib hands may be keys to help his fellow stitchpunk beings navigate their darkest hours.
Director Shane Acker affecionatly says Producer Tim Burton was part of the inspiration for 6, and his physical apperance may infact remind audiences of a character from one of Burton's most famous films.
7 - Voiced by Jennifer Connelly, 7 is a brave and self-sufficient warrior,she is the group’s sole female. A fiercely independent adventuress she has been out patrolling the wasteland. To survive, she has adapted, finding the bones of a deceased bird and crafting her signature skull helmet.
8 -Armed with a giant kitchen cleaver and half a scissor blade, the none-too-bright muscle and enforcer of the group, 8, is created to help the others physically survive the dangerous post-apocalyptic world.
9 -To voice the lead role of the newly born - and aborning hero — 9, Acker couldn’t help but have in mind an actor who was so central to the film set he had worked on years earlier in New Zealand - “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” star Elijah Wood. The director remarks, "For an actor who can play someone naive yet unafraid to follow his instincts, and in so doing emerge as a leader, I knew I wanted Elijah."
"They are all disturbing in their own way-- taking basic houshold utensils and turning them into scary monsters." ~Producer Tim Burton on the Machines of 9.
Fabrication Machine- The Fabrication Machine is the origional and all powerful machine-- a completely autonomous, "thinking" builder whose elaborate, highly sophistocated design, massive size and nimble mechanical arms can construct other machines and beasts using any and all available raw materials. Each arm, and it's body, are able to move in thousands of ways to gather these materials and build it's predatory army.
Seamstress- The Seamstress is one of the most advanced, subversive and terrifying beasts in 9. Director Shane Acker was inspired by the mythological Medusa in his creation of this serpentine hunter. Fashioned with a doll's head, grasping prehensile arms, an intricate thread-spool mechanism and hypnotic eyes, the Seamstress lures her prey out of hiding and stuns them into submission before sewing them up within itself.
Catbeast- The Catbeast is the most primative beast encountered in 9. Taking its name from its cat skull head, this hunter is equipped with retractable razor claws and night vision, and posseses raw brute strength, and surprising ability.
Wingedbeast- A massive and deadly beast that attacks from above, the Winged Beast in in effect a post-apocalyptic dragon whose head is made out of scissors, saws and dental tools.
Star Elijah Wood says, "In 9, when the winged beast appears it's the first time that they've encountered a beast that isn't on the ground. What makes the sequence so scary is that 1 and his fellow stitchpunk beings really truly feel like they've got some sense of sanctuary in the cathedral-- that they can't be harmed-- and suddenly that safety net is torn wide open. It's the first beast that they literally can't hide from. It strips them of all their safety." He adds, "It's an incredible action sequence. The Winged Beast also reminded me of the Nasgul from The Lord of the Rings."
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