Once he lands on a Finnish beach, a pelican is so fascinated by humans, he decides to be one—he buys a suit, rents an apartment, gets a job as a stagehand, and even falls in love with a swan-like ballerina. He turns into a handsome and charming man who communicates by imitating others. When 10-year-old Emil (who isn’t fooled by the bird for one second) enters his life, the bona fide world of humans is unveiled. Emil teaches him how to read and they initiate a splendid friendship. But when Pelicanman’s nutty landlady, who is allergic to birds, discovers his secret, she has the authorities whisk him away. After Emil and his friend Elsa rescue Pelicanman from the grips of zookeepers, he decides it is time to go back to being just a bird. (Ages 7+)
Liisa Helminen has a Master of Arts, with a specialization in directing, from the University of Applied Arts in Helsinki. She is the author and director of Kurkistuskulisseihin; co-author, supervising director, and co-producer of the prize-winning animation series Tootletubs & Jyro; producer of Tini Sauvo’s animated series Mole’s Treasure; and is the producer and co-author of the prize-winning animation film, The Twin. Helminen is also the co-author, co-director, and co-producer of the animation series Urpo & Turpo, and the producer of the animated film The Rooster and Hen Have a Sauna. She began her career by directing the documentary Little Women and Lads and the children’s film Tough Guys, as well as several other short films and documentaries for and about children.