Chasing Daisy, Upcoming Student Film About Teddy Bear Dictator


By Rachel Ansell
Filming a movie with a character that isn’t human, Michael Vanderpool shoots to be creative and original. Snugglepuss, a teddy bear idolized by Maxwell (Justin Roshak) and Robin (Rachel Ansell), is seen throughout the film Chasing Daisy and is given a seemingly innocent yet sinister personality along the way.First seen as the commander of Switzerland in a Model United Nations meeting, Maxwell carries out Snugglepuss’s bidding by pledging to destroy the “coco bean capitalists” and spreading fascism to the major countries of the world. Snugglepuss is a  god-like leader of the cultish club Maxwell and Robin created, isolating themselves from the rest of their school.

One of Vanderpool’s favorite lines from the movie is “Snugglepuss loves you”, meant in an eerie sort of way. In a bizarre joining ritual, one must receive approval from Snugglepuss to enter the cult. One of the rules is not to stare at its lazy eye, which he doesn’t really have, being a teddy bear. Then the individual has to swear to love Snugglepuss, and kiss his nose.

Although he’s just a stuffed animal, Vanderpool seems to have put a lot of thought into the kind of personality Snugglepuss has, putting him both in the comical and emotional scenes of the film. Snugglepuss is the terrorizor of the Model UN, the loved and feared lord of Maxwell’s cult, and the one thing that connects all of the characters shapes a sort of omniscient role for an inanimate object. “He represents the friendship between Robin, Toby, and Maxwell”, Vanderpool said about Snugglepuss. “He’s like your friendly neighborhood dictator.”

The idea of Snugglepuss came before Vanderpool had even thought of Chasing Daisy. “I basically wrote this monologue about this demonic teddy bear, and in the story I found that Snugglepuss had very similar characteristics to the Swedish dictator, Svanderzshvorschki,” Vanderpool said. Svanderzshvorschki, he stated, was also a purely fictional character that he had played around with before his story came into fruition.

When asked what kind of film Chasing Daisy was, Vanderpool said it was “a romantic comedy, I guess, with a mix of communism.” Vanderpool also claims to have it out “by my birthday, June 18th. If it’s not done, I’ll die.” If all goes as planned, everyone will be celebrating both his birthday and the first showing of Chasing Daisy.