Private Project


BLU is an unforgettable maritime voyage that introduces us to the enchanted world of a magical watch and talking ships on the high seas. The heart of the film is centered around an insecure cruise ship, BLU, who goes through a painstaking journey to learn her proper worth. This adventurous tale invites us into a unique and mystical relationship between the vessels and their Captains, Stevens and Smitty. Each Captain is willing to take monumental risks to get what they want…one for love and the other for greed. While mentoring and encouraging BLU with his magical watch, dealing with ornery guests, and leading his crew, Captain Stevens is pursued by the villainous Captain Smitty, who is on a quest to steal the watch and access its limitless power.

  • Delvin Warren
  • Delvin Warren
  • Delvin Warren
  • Acacia M. Warren
  • Umar Shafiq
  • Delvin Warren
    Key Cast
  • Thomas C. Lynch
    Key Cast
  • Ashleyrose Gilham
    Key Cast
  • Petri Hawkins-Byrd
    Key Cast
    Judge Judy
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Short
  • Runtime:
    9 minutes 15 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 6, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    386,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Delvin Warren

Delvin Warren was born and raised in Vallejo, California. His passion for ships and the maritime industry are attributed to his father, Charles Warren, a retired veteran who served over 40 years in the United States Navy. Delvin was the only African American in his graduating class from California Maritime Academy. He holds an unlimited deck and unlimited engineering license, and has sailed on cargo ships, oil tankers, military ships, yachts and tugboats. With 18 years in the maritime industry, Delvin has traveled to over 30 countries by sea. He has aspirations of becoming the first Black Harbor Pilot on the West Coast and directing BLU as a feature film. Delvin also hopes to inspire and educate people about the world of shipping and its global impact. The story of BLU captures the essence of Delvin's voyages and experiences on the high seas.

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Director Statement

Merchant mariners are an integral part of commerce. They transport passengers, food, clothes, shoes, cell phones and digital devices, military equipment, planes, trains, cars, boats, and more. Merchant mariners spend 50-70% of the year on the ocean - away from family, friends, and loved ones. For this reason, the majority of BLU was written and produced during my voyages out at sea.

My travels on the ocean were the impetus behind this project. I envisioned a talking ship animation movie and spent my down time reading several articles on screenwriting and storytelling. To gain more insight and knowledge, I ordered books online. A crew member would say over the loudhailer, "Delvin, your packages are here." And so, the writing began...To my dismay, I learned that Hollywood had no interest in an animated sea story written by a merchant mariner. A pivotal moment occurred when I came across an article written about George Lucas and his struggles to pitch Star Wars. Lucas developed toy models to support his movie concept. I took it a step further by writing a children's book and producing my own toy characters from the script to help pitch the story. After posting sing-along videos on YouTube that featured boats from the script, my followers encouraged me to submit an animated short to the film festival. I am determined to share my story and show the power of perseverance.

BLU conveys what it's like to be a Black merchant mariner and severely underrepresented in the profession. By writing and directing BLU, I am embarking on an ambitious mission to change the status quo. My call to action is introducing and exposing minoritized populations to the maritime industry, specifically women and African Americans. Currently, only 6 percent of the maritime industry is represented by women, with African Americans making up an even smaller percentage. It was essential for this short film to feature a Black captain as the lead character, along with an inclusive fleet of boats that represent different cultures and genders. More importantly, I am aspiring to teach kids the true meaning of sacrifice, love, and the critical importance of diversity and inclusion in the maritime industry and the world.