Loving Vincent premieres in London

Van Gogh inspired film Loving Vincent premieres in London.

LONDON (REUTERS) - Billed as the world’s first fully-painted feature film, Loving Vincent premiered in London on Monday (Oct 9).

The homage to the Dutch artist uses more than 130 of the painter’s own works to tell his own story.

Director Hugh Welchman explained why he and co-director, Dorota Kobiela, who is also his wife, chose van Gogh as the subject.

“Vincent is very unusual because he painted his whole world. So he painted his shoes, he painted his bedroom, the view from his bedroom, his food, the person serving his food. So it was actually very easy for us to get a picture of the world as Vincent van Gogh saw it. The other reason is that he just has this incredibly dramatic and tragic story,” said Welchman.

Each of the 65,000 frames of the animated independent film is an oil painting hand painted by 125 professional artists who traveled from around the world to be a part of the project.

More than 4,000 artists from around the world applied for the job and 125 were chosen and put through three weeks training.

The film has won lavish praise for the technique, but some critics said the narrative does not match the film’s breathtaking visual appeal.

However, Welchman said the film has been given a thumbs-up by audiences in the United States, where it opened more than two weeks ago.

Loving Vincent is the first to have actors playing some of the people Van Gogh captured on canvas.

Actor Helen McCrory plays Louise Chevalier, the housekeeper of Doctor Gachet who looked after the painter.

The $5.5 million (S$7.46 million) production focuses on the last weeks of Van Gogh’s life before his death in 1890 in France at age 37 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.