Darren studied at Pratt Institute, worked as a Key Assistant Animator at Walt Disney Feature Animation, Online Game Conceptual Designer at Brilliant Digital Entertainment, Story Artist at Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Head Story Artist at Imagi Animation Studios.
- Me and My Shadow (????) (filming) - Story Artist
- Turbo (2013) - story artist
- Rise of the Guardians (2012) - Story Artist, Visual Development Artist
- Hotel Transylvania (2012) - Story Artist
- Puss in Boots: The three Diablos (video short) (2012) - Story Artist
- Puss in Boots (2011) - Story Artist
- How to Train Your Dragon (2010) - Additional Story Artist
- Flushed Away (2006) - Story Artist
- Mulan (1998) - Key Assistant Clean-up Animator: "Khan" and "Gerenal Li"
- Pocohontas (1995) - Inbetweener: "Native Americans" / "English Settlers", Florida
- The Lion King (1994) - Inbetweener trainee
Elves Are Stupid...Or are they Awesome!
In 2008, when Darren Webb was first working on Rise of the Guardians, while exploring different concepts for the North's Workshop, Darren was informed that the Yeti's made the toys, not the elves, so when he asked about the elves the response was; "Elves are stupid and for babies. There will be no elves in this movie."
Darren quickly pointed out that if the elves are a huge part of the Santa mythology and they would risk distracting the audience, questioning why there weren't any elves, if they didn't address the subject. So, Darren took it upon himself to reinvent the elves, not as toy makers, but as house attendants. They would be about 2 feet tall, not speak, look like living Santa hats and tend to the need of guests who were staying at the North Pole. They would burst out secret panels in the walls, turn down the bed, light the fireplace, dish out cookies and milk on the nightstand, make sure all the presents were positioned under the requisite Christmas Tree and after tucking them in for the night they would disappear back into the walls like they'd never been there.
The Avengers of Childhood
A collection of drafts and concept art, showing early designs of the characters and locations, as well as early story drafts.
Pitch's character design was unclear from the very beginning and there were different ideas of what each artist imagined what such an iconic figure should look like. Darren experiment with the idea that Pitch would ingesting Dream sand and pouring back out nightmares and gave Pitch a sea-theme like design, much like Sandy's design, but with tubes/spikes jutting out from him, much like a sea creature.
The team also toyed with an idea for Jack's back story, he and Pitch could have been like brothers. Jack could have been a bad guy but he and Pitch had a fight which cost Jack his memory, and giving the Guardians reason to not trust Jack.
Santa to the Rescue
Very early on in the story process there was an idea that Jack Frost would pick up the other Guardians, Wizard of Oz style, in that he'd collect them all one at a time. So in this beat board, Jack, Bunny and Tooth Fairy are taking Bunny's hot air balloon to the North Pole. As night descends on their journey, Pitch sends his nightmare men to attack, but North has a surprise in store for everyone.
Jack Frost, Elves and the North Pole
North welcomes you to Santa's Workshop... by kidnapping you.
After working on the concept design on North's Workshop, Darren was then asked to conceive and board a sequence that would introduce Jack Frost to the idea that the Guardians were in fact real. In this version of the story, Jack only had knowledge of North, Tooth, Bunny and Sandy through overhearing children's stories. In this sequence, Jack freezes his Yeti escort sent by North and through a haphazard pursuit of an elf ends up touring through and discovering the purpose of North's workshop until the now thawed and angry Yeti catches up with him.
Kill the Wabbit!
An early sequence that only made it to the thumbnail stage before it was decided that the events should happen off screen, was Pitch, the Boogeyman attacking the Easter Bunny's kingdom. In this version, Pitch makes himself known to the Guardians for the first time. This sequence also served as Bunny and North's introductions into the film. The scene starts as Bunny's minions have mistakenly taken the Tooth Fairy prisoner.
The Third Act
These storyboard thumbnails were from the first attempt at putting some cohesive story elements into the 3rd Act of the film that would play out the idea of belief in the Guardians powers their magic. The Guardians need to give buy Jack enough time for his plan to work, but due to the children's lack of belief they cannot enter the bedrooms and can only prepare for the moment they are needed. This entire sequence shows how the four Guardians working together putting presents, eggs, fairies, and dreams at the window of every child.