Murder Most English: A Flaxborough Chronicle (1977)

Concept and creative process

For 'Murder Most English' Stefan Pstrowski chose that most English of artefacts, the tea caddy as the centrepiece of his titles for the Flaxborough murder mysteries. The camera movement on the tea caddy, including the opening and closing of the lid, was filmed single frame. The cell animated cartoon elements were shot front and backlit on a rostrum camera to create the mattes and masters, which were combined subsequently in a film optical with the tea caddy shot. Bearing an illustrated map of the town, the tea caddy appears quite innocuous until a cartoon hand opens the lid and reveals its dark secret! A tongue-in-cheek solution that draws the viewer in to the action to follow.