Student animated film about boy's same-gender crush goes viral

@EstebanBravoP/Twitter(SARASOTA, Fla.) — Two student animators combined their creative skills to make a short film they say elicits all the relatable emotions of young love.

When Esteban Bravo and Beth David created “In a Heartbeat,” they didn’t predicted that their four-minute film without any spoken words would go viral in less than one day.

The film depicts “a closeted boy who runs the risk of being outed by his own heart after it pops out of his chest to chase down the boy of his dreams,” the team said on the film’s YouTube page.

On YouTube alone, the film has garnered almost 6 million views in less than three days and was featured on Vimeo as a staff pick.

Bravo and David, both seniors and computer animation majors at Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida, came up with the concept for college their thesis project.

They launched their Kickstarter campaign on November 15, 2016, in which they shared their labor of love making the film, along with original character illustrations. The duo reached 100 percent of their funding goal of $3,000 within three hours, according to their Kickstarter. To date the campaign has raised more than $14,000.

Member of the LGBT community and human rights groups have shared positive feedback and support for the film, saying it delivers a powerful heartfelt message about love.

“With almost six million views on YouTube, the video is a testament to the saying ‘love is love,'” Hayley Miller, a senior digital media manager for the Human Rights Campaign told ABC News. “Everyone, no matter age, race, nationality, sexual orientation or gender identity, can relate to this video. We’ve all had a crush or a broken heart. Using no words, it validates this young boy’s experience and the way all LGBTQ youth should be embraced.”

Some film industry members and celebrities have also expressed support. The youngest sister of three from the band Haim, Alana Haim, took to Twitter describing her emotional response to watching “In a Heartbeat.”

YouTube star Thomas Sanders also tweeted his excitement and reaction once the film was released Monday.

The short film was released on YouTube on July 31.
Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.