Under The Apple Tree

Under The Apple Tree
An Animation by Erik van Schaaik
Crowdfunding teaser: 
funded project
donated of €15.000
days to go

Project Information

About the project
LOCKLINEA fun horror story before bedtime, about family, divorce and death. Beautiful stop motion animation.

Look out! Behind you!

‘The apple farmer and the priest. Neighbours at war. Born as brothers but since birth nevermore.’ Two quarreling characters oblivious to the doings of two much smaller beings, Aber and Crombie, worm-brothers living in an apple. However, the story of the humans becomes entangled with the story of the worms and things go horribly wrong. Worms get separated and reunite. People die and wake up. Rain and thunderstorms lash the cemetery. Are we talking divine intervention or basic agricultural principles? Apple cider will never taste the same, that’s for sure!

The bookWriter/director Erik van Schaaik has been fascinated by horror stories from an early age. His love of thunderstorms, fluttering curtains and long dark corridors has brought him to the south of Belgium, where he lived in a castle and started writing 'Under The Apple Tree'. In the vein of Poe, Wilde and Dahl, it’s an amusing little horror fable that satirically sketches the similarities between man and worm, resulting in the unification of the two: the walking dead.

‘Apple Tree is a movie full of contradictions: Bizarre but touching. Story about animals but human drama. Staged as a feature film but dialogue in rhyme. It’s all about the inner world, literally and figuratively.’ (Erik)

Abercrombie‘I enjoy mist, rain, thunderstorms, cold and mud. From a comfortable, warm couch that is, with beer and pretzels. It’s a challenge to have your puppets walk through fog or rain, soaking wet and covered in mud. These are all things that are extremely difficult to animate in stopmotion. But this is exactly what we are going to do! Animators will hate me for it, but this is going to be a deliciously dirty, wet movie.’ (Erik)


Thomas Hietbrink - ProducerAnneloes van Holten - wardrobeJohn Craney - lead puppet builderWilleke Smid - painterSergio Lara - AnimatorAnita van Dalen - Co-producer

Erik van Schaaik - Writer / DirectorPaul Mathot - puppet builderPeter Mansfeld - lead set builder and D.O.P.Clair King - VoiceGatze Zonneveld - compositor, visual effectsHenry Brummelman - set- and puppet builder

Tim Gunther - VoiceSebastian Doermann - set builderRinus Aarts - all things audioDorien Schetz - online producer BeastRosanne Janssens - animator Maarten van Rooy - rigger, animator

Thomas Hietbrink took up to the challenge with Pedri Animation, one of Hollands leading stopmotion studios, to raise (crowd)funds and produce top notch animated entertainment. He brought in the multi award winning talents of Beast Animation (Belgium) and animator Sergio Lara (Spain) to give the project a head start. Director Erik van Schaaik filmed every step of the process and posted it as a production diary on the Apple Tree website. Have a look, meet the makers, witness the transition from written word to moving image! 

Long, dark nights

Connecting them bonesSets, Props and PuppetsRecording voicesSculpting puppets

Kick-off at Pedri studio’s

Production, design and casting



 crowdfunding campaign

miniature apple





A short story grew into a monster. And it’s alive! Aliiiiive! Please support Under The Apple Tree and help us raise it to a strong and healthy animated horror comedy. When the time has come to leave the nest, it will travel the world and see the film festivals and do television and other public appearances. It’ll be one happy movie! Please donate. Together we can do this thing. Thank you.

Quote that inspired the maker

The secret of zombiedom. Now you know...
Nethy (worm)
This project was successfully funded on 26-05-2015

Fund Project