Roberto and the Robot comes to DVD

Oct 3rd, 2009 | By | Category: Features, News, News Feature, Springfield News

Roberto and the Robot banner

Missouri State University graduate and filmmaker Jonathan Stratman released the DVD of his film Roberto and the Robot for sale this week at the Moxie theater in Springfield and online.  The film was one of two major collaborative senior projects produced by MSU’s Electronic Arts program last spring.

Stratman said the most rewarding part of his experience making Roberto and the Robot was his collaboration with many talented people, both inside and outside the Electronic Arts program.  “The [Electronic Arts] program is great because they highlight your interest, but also focus on collaboration, which is a key part of all electronic arts generally and films specifically,” he said.

“Springfield has a great film community,” Stratman said, “You mention that you’re shooting a movie, and the word gets out, and people start calling you to be part of it.”

Stratman also praised the faculty and facilities at MSU in helping to create the film. “In fact,” he said, “a couple of teachers came up to me on the first day of shooting, wished me luck, and gave me $50 a piece.  That bought food on the first day of shooting.”

According to Stratman, the entire production cost around $3,000. Most of this money came from donations.  The rest, Stratman said, is on credit cards he’s still repaying.

Roberto and the Robot DVD coverThe DVD has a very low price tag, which Stratman said is set just to cover the cost of making the DVD. Stratman described the DVD sales as “non-profit.”

The Roberto and the Robot DVD includes a commentary track recorded by Stratman, a behind the scenes featurette, and three other shorts produced at MSU: Roommate Wanted, American Psalm, and Circumvolve.

The soundtrack will also be available at the Moxie and online, featuring eight original rock tunes written and mixed by MSU student Isaac Crawford, who is also the sound designer for Roberto and the Robot.  Crawford cites early Rolling Stones and Velvet Underground as inspiration for the songs he wrote for the movie. “As the film progresses,” Crawford said, “the music also changes, adding the synthesizer sounds of the robot.”

Stratman expressed concern MSU’s Electronic Arts program might be seen by some as too difficult to join.  It should require a commitment, he said, but should also encourage a wide variety of students to join to enrich the collaborative process.

Stratman’s advice for students interested in the program is to start early. “Don’t wait to take a class you want to take, don’t wait to jump in and help with other people’s projects,” he said, “and don’t let people scare you off from trying to apply for the program.”

You can find out more about the movie at DVDs are available at

The author of this article participated in the production of Roberto and the Robot.

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