We know the name’s a little quirky. ‘Why Rat & Dragon?’ is about the second most asked question as we meet people on this London to Sydney adventure (shortly after ‘Are you crazy?’).
Could it be about the balance of forces between real versus imagined, diminutive versus larger-than-life, regal and epic versus the commonplace? (Probably not). Could it be that Rat & Dragon are the company founder’s Chinese horoscope signs? (Probably).
Or could it be that we’re just so damn inspired by various Rats & Dragons of history and popular culture that we thought the combination was just plain cool, and just what we need to carry with us on our huge variety of projects around the world? Here are our top three Rats & Dragons:
Rat: Master Splinter (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Originally the pet of a powerful Japanese Ninja, Master Splinter learned his moves by mimicking his owner. After his master was killed, this ass-kicking Rat went on to train a band of mutated turtles to become silent, pizza-loving, weapon-wielding protectors of NYC. What’s not cool about that?
Dragon: Yu-Loong (Monkey!)
This Japanese kids TV series had a cult-status English dubbed version. Yu-Loong was the third prince of the Dragon King of the Western Ocean, but confusingly took the alternating form of either a white horse or a human, depending on demon-kicking needs (and the series producer’s budget at the time), as he journeyed with friends across China.
Rat: Ratty (The Wind in the Willows)
In glaring contrast to our previous Rat of choice, the much more sedate Ratty loves the peaceful life, relishing nothing more than a row on a riverboat with a friend and a good book. Although you’ll know he’s not averse to a little adventure either.
Dragon: Falkor (The NeverEnding Story)
As a Luck Dragon, Falkor was less of a long-sighted strategist and more of a laid-back, go-with-the-flow kind of character. Don’t get us wrong, he worked damn hard and fought for what he believed in. But in all he set out to achieve, without a plan and seemingly without a hope, faith in his luck helped him keep cool and save the day. Whilst never taken for granted, a good dose of luck also comes in handy on any big production.
Rat: Remi (Ratatouille)
The unwilling adventurer, when Remi is forced from his home and winds up in the streets Paris, he finds the perfect fit for his epicurean passions that had somewhat alienated him from his brethren previously. Finding yourself through travelling the world – sound familiar..?
Dragon: Komodo Dragon (Komodo Island, Indonesia)
The relatively recent discovery of a real-life giant to be found only on one remote Indonesian Island and no-where else on the planet inspired 20th Century minds to wonder what other mythical creatures might actually be out there in the real world, waiting to be discovered. Film giant King Kong sprung from one such mind, and who knows what Dragons of inspiration Rat & Dragon will discover on our Epic Journey project?
Each of these Rats & Dragons has inspired us in some way, and so we carry them with us. Discipline, passion for our craft, an appetite for adventure and the belief that there are still undiscovered wonders in this world sum up the reasons why Rat & Dragon want to get out there and capture it all on film, in photos and in words.
And as creativity grows through communication, share your favourite rats and dragons with us in the comments below!