Must Watch: Jill Kintner Rides with Her Favorite Critters in 'Bandit Hill' Fairy Tale Animation

Feb 1, 2022 at 20:02
by Sarah Moore  


With an Olympic bronze medal in BMX, five World Cup DH podiums, five Queen of Crankworx titles, and countless podiums in enduro, DH and 4X, Jill Kintner is best known as a competitive mountain biker. What you may not know is that art is a major part of Kintner's life and that she studied illustration and design at school in New York and San Francisco. Today, Kintner is releasing 'Bandit Hill', a project that showcases her riding while creatively telling a magical little story about the critters on her Red Bull helmet coming to life.

This isn't the first time Kintner has combined her passion for art with her career as an athlete. In addition to designing her custom Red Bull helmet, she's done various apparel collaborations, and worked on poster and web designs, vehicle wraps and much more. Kintner has also used her drawing skills to create the elaborate course maps that she's used throughout her career to visualize her race runs.


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In Bandit Hill, the critters on Kintner's helmet come to life.

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A closer look at the artwork on Kintner's helmet.

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Kintner and her team spent the past three years building this project. While the idea for the project started well before Covid hit, it turned from “just another fun project” before the pandemic into a creative pursuit that helped keep mental health in a positive place.

In 2020, Jill launched the Mind Maintenance project, encouraging her fans to express their creativity and take a mental health break with her colouring book templates while they were stuck at home. Kintner says that Bandit Hill is woven into the characters of mind maintenance and is an extension of her journey, blending artwork into biking.

A trio of Kintner's favourite woodland critters that she incorporated into the Mind Maintenance templates star in Bandit Hill: Squirrel, Fox, and Snail.

bigquotesBeing from the Pacific Northwest you see these critters all the time in the forest. They’re kind of like my little friends and being outside with them is my happy place. These drawings all started as random thoughts and ideas in my sketchbook. That’s where the idea for Bandit Hill came from. I thought it would be so cool to bring my helmet to life and try to experience their world.



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One of Jill's colouring templates from the Mind Maintenance project.

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And the character templates from Bandit Hill.

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The video stars Kintner and a trio of her favourite woodland critters: Squirrel, Fox, and Snail.

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It took nearly three years for the world of Bandit Hill to come to life. Kintner sculpted an acorn "snack" out of clay, developed multiple sets for various scenes and spent months perfecting the tiny details of every little design element.

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It took weeks to find the perfect tree for the critters to call home but the result is a perfect little animal haven, complete with lights, working chimneys, and a miniature fire pit.


It took nearly three years for Kintner, director and lead Filmer Scotty Carlson of Juicy Studios, animator Owen Rixen of the 2D Workshop, and writer/producer Lacy Kemp to develop the narrative, characters, and the world of Bandit Hill.

bigquotesSeeing everyone’s touch and the combination of everyone’s skills totally exceeded my expectation. We had daily briefs for months with the crew to see animatics, talk, redraw. What our whole team collectively brought to this project was incredible.Jill Kintner


Kintner says that Bandit Hill the film is just one piece of the puzzle. She has also created merchandise that is for sale on her website that showcases Squirrel, Fox, Snail, and other characters from the story. Kintner says that a children’s book is forthcoming, and her long-term goal is to create immersive events that kids and parents can attend on their bikes and ride through Bandit Hill themselves.





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Learn more about Bandit Hill in this Behind the Scenes Q&A with Kintner on our sister site Beta here.


Bandit Hill Credits

Directed By: Scotty Carlson
Starring: Jill Kintner
Written By: Lacy Kemp
Original Artwork: Jill Kintner + Catherine Morley
Director Of Photography: Derek Frankowski
2D Animation: The 2D Workshop
Drone Photography: Sky Shillhammer
Production Assistants: Bryn Atkinson + Oliver Parish
Executive Producers: Rob Pursell + Chris Worden + Aaron Lutze
VFX: Jeremy Kenning + Scotty Carlson
Post Production Sound: Keith White
Audio Voice Over: Penny Ryder
Photography: Bryn Atkinson
Produced By: Juicy Studios
Red Bull

Author Info:
sarahmoore avatar

Member since Mar 30, 2011
1,295 articles

125 Comments
  • 125 0
 This is amazing. I smiled the whole time. PB really delivered this time as I check what's new before logging in to work. Thanks, Jill for creating these fun characters. Thanks to the rest of the team for giving us this fun entertainment. It's a change from normal content, and it's much appreciated. Great work!
  • 21 0
 That was seriously amazing. Well done!
  • 60 0
 This was so rad. I’m stoked to show it to my kids. Not only is this video creative and inspiring.. Jill is the exact role model I want for my three girls. So stoked on this.
  • 44 1
 Not only am I loving the video/article, I am also loving the 100% positive Pinker comments - I hereby nominate Jill Kintner to be the next President of the United States! One Nation under Jill!
  • 6 0
 Bryn is a lucky man indeed!!
  • 1 0
 Let’s make this happen.. I’ll donate to her campaign fund right now!
  • 36 1
 This is so different from the same old content we keep getting. Well done Jill
  • 34 0
 i work on animation for a living (bobs burgers, the great north, central park) and this was absolutely amazing!
  • 11 0
 Can I be your friend?
  • 3 0
 nice to see a fellow animation worker on here, I bet theres not that many of us haha
  • 2 0
 Did you get to do 'Last Gingerbread House on the left'? I roil with laughter every time I see the shootout scene. And when is the movie finally coming out??
  • 1 0
 @premiumfrye: haha thats season 7 i started end of season 8 i think? we finished audio a few weeks ago (im one of the music editors). i think its late may according to the press release. @IsaacO have we ridden together with the universal cycles crew?! @ravenra new friend high five!
  • 2 0
 @IsaacO: there are a few of us out here…
  • 2 0
 I work in vfx for a living and mountain bike. The world is oh so small.
  • 26 0
 One of the best videos I've seen with animation integrated into it. Great idea and even better execution. Nice work to everyone involved.
  • 24 0
 Brilliant
  • 16 0
 That made my day and I totally can’t wait for the kids to get home so that we can watch it together. Huge project but amazing result.
  • 9 0
 Marvelous , just marvelous . Thanks for a fun journey down , down an unknown road . Kudos to your skills as an educated individual and rider Jill, thanks :-)
  • 7 0
 So awesome! Jill is one of my all time favorite woman riders! Been following here carrier for years and her art. So glad to see this project. Well Done Jill an all involved!
  • 6 0
 This is totally awesome. The video by itself is great, innovative, different, but to learn that Jill did all the animation and to read the backstory is pretty amazing.
  • 3 0
 Apropos question: Has anyone ever run over a squirrel with their mtb? Lots of near misses myself, but never seen one get squashed or seen one dead on trail. Maybe scientific research into why they fair better with bikes than cars is called for?
  • 1 0
 No, but I do see a lot of mice running on the trail when night riding. They are very shinny and kind of silver coloured in the bike lights. One friend stopped to avoid hitting one the other night.
  • 3 0
 I've had a squirrel sideswipe my leg, nobody injured. I'm imagining if one were to be squished it'd have enough squirrel energy to get off the trail. Even fully flattened. Squirrels are fired up.

I rode over a large rat a few years ago, your question gives me shudder-inducing flashbacks...nighttime commute along the waterfront, rolling 12mph and THUNK THUNK double-tagged what appeared to be an 18" rodent...I screamed and sprinted out of there (easily 16mph), haunted. Ugh. It made a noise, that rat did.
  • 1 0
 Had a squirrel run between my tires which was quite exciting. Also had an armadillo run into my back tire. Good thing he's got all that armor.
  • 1 0
 I've had a chipmunk run across, somehow latch onto the tire or get picked up by a knob, rode a quarter way on the wheel then launched onto my shoe. Slowed down, shook it off and it scampered away unharmed.
  • 1 0
 @NealWood: Haha yup, poor little guy just froze in the middle of the trail just staring at my helmet light. I definitely would have squashed him if I hadn't of stopped.
  • 1 0
 Years ago I ran a squirrel over with my rear wheel. I didn't even feel it but my mate who was following said I definitely hit it and it then ran into the bushes. We couldn't find it so hopefully it was okay. Last year I had to dispatch one that I'm guessing had been hit by another rider. It was an unpleasant experience but the squirrel was in such a state that it was the only thing to do.
  • 1 0
 Yes, a chipmonk.
  • 1 0
 In NZ we don't have squirrels but have hit a rabbit, and have come round a corner to find a bunch of sheep on the trails
  • 2 0
 @owl-X: i hate to even say it, but the username does not check out
  • 2 0
 Had a squirrel tail whip my face, it wasn’t as soft and fluffy as I imagined it would’ve been
  • 1 0
 Never a rodent. But had to swerve to avoid a rattle snake a few months ago. Not furry Not cute
  • 1 0
 @pmhobson: don’t worry, I’m gone!
  • 1 0
 I have accidentally run over a snake (I think it survived, just startled it) and a bird (died instantly). If you hit any small animal square with the tire, it is likely to explode depending on how aggressive your tread is and how fast you were going.
  • 1 0
 Two friends have, two front wheel encounters where the squirrel was swept up behind the fork legs. The MTB fork totally blew up and shredded the varmint, fuzz and guts everywhere. The road bike not so good. Snapped the steerer between the bearings, the front wheel was shoved back into the chainrings, destroying the bike and putting the rider in the hospital with a broken clavicle and road rash from head to toe. Not sure about the health of varmint #2!
  • 1 0
 I've gotten a chipmunk with my roadbike... poor bugger. At least it was over quick!
  • 1 0
 During college I was riding to class and startled a squirrel who was raiding a trash can, at which point it jumped directly into my front wheel. Its head was promptly relieved of its duties.
  • 6 0
 My two daughters just watched this 10+ times back to back! lol that was awesome Nice work!
  • 7 1
 Next thing is Disney into mountainbiking.
  • 22 0
 Pix-Gnar! I think you’re onto something….
  • 5 0
 Outside of the 2013 Heckler release video, this is the best bicycling video ever.
  • 3 0
 This was really infantile and silly. Bike brands should take themselves more seriously...


YT, how about a 2 hour ominous film featuring a dude dresses as goaty version of Donni Darko's rabbit?
  • 5 0
 That was rad!! Especially knowing that little fairy tree house myself Smile
  • 3 0
 Finding that little tree house while sessioning that zone was surprising…. It all makes sense now
  • 2 0
 So unexpectedly perfect. I have had no desire to ride for so long and this completely changed that! Thank you for filling this grey rainy day with sunshine. Please make more Smile
  • 4 0
 Love it, can't wait to show my kiddo!
  • 3 0
 Beyond great! My two girls are going to be watching this on repeat I’d wager Smile
  • 3 0
 Awesome stuff - can't wait for the children’s book to read to my little one!
  • 3 0
 Finally came back to watch this and no video/black screen for me? No link, etc.?
  • 3 0
 10/10. So good. Queen Jill rules by her own rules. Very fun innocent and original.
  • 6 3
 Previous article is bugged. It yeets visitors into paywall. Is it supposed to do it?
  • 2 0
 And so it begins...
  • 4 0
 Yeah it is supposed to do that. Just ask outside how they want to ruin pinkbike
@notoutsideceo
  • 2 0
 It was an article you could comment on. It got extremely savage very quickly so they changed it to a direct link.
  • 3 2
 @bashhard: No paywall if you're subscribed!

Be safe be well,
Incognito Robin
  • 4 0
 Anyone else not getting the video to work?
  • 1 0
 I only get a black box. Both Mac and iPad
  • 3 1
 Well done. Where can I buy that nut snack! May add some LSD, so we all can see the colorful forest wild live creatures.
  • 2 0
 Congrats Jill! I remember you telling me about this years ago, amazing it came to fruition! So much fun Smile
  • 1 0
 This was very impressive, total highlight of my morning and a refreshing change from what I usually expect to be viewing on a typical pb feed check
  • 2 0
 i thought it was about the badass hedgehogs from outer space...one of my favourite 80ies movies...the critters
  • 1 0
 Wow that's amazing. Just fantastic! I loved every second of that! I will definitely show this to my 5 year old as well, he'll love the characters Smile
  • 2 0
 Great video and loved seeing how many names from the bike industry were involved in this.
  • 1 0
 Loved it! My kiddo hasn't giggled as much while watching a video in a long time, and now he's thinking about riding to imagine their next adventure. Bravo!
  • 2 0
 This is awesome! Nice work Jill!
  • 1 0
 What a great project. And it's awesome to see such a great breakdown in the post- not just a link to the video and site.
  • 2 0
 So good! Absolutely Love it!
  • 2 0
 Utterly charming in every way! Congratulations Jill!
  • 2 0
 Such an awesome film, the whole crew crushed it!
  • 2 0
 How good's that, awesome.
  • 1 0
 Not sure about whohad more fun watching it: my 3 year old daughter or me.

That was excellent!!!
  • 1 0
 Bravo that was a real treat. I smiled through the whole thing. I appreciate the real-time Mind Maintenance!
  • 1 0
 Didn't expect to see this today... what a treat. Thanks Queen n' crew!! Smile
  • 1 0
 Awesome! Maybe my girls will be a bit more interested in shredding after seeing this, haha #wishfulthinking
  • 1 0
 This makes my heart so happy Smile thanks for sharing your creativity, Jill, Lacy and crew.
  • 1 0
 Excellent work! Will share with my daughter who isn't so much into bikes, but is into animation and art!
  • 2 0
 I love it! This is awesome Jill and so much fun.
  • 3 0
 Best MTB Video EVER!
  • 2 0
 Thanks for that Jill on the Hill
  • 1 0
 Congrats Jill! You and your team should all be very proud. This made my day!
  • 2 0
 Beautiful, wholesome content is what we need in 2022!
  • 1 0
 That was so rad! Showing this to my daughter tonight and hopefully she'll want to ride more because of it.
  • 1 0
 stoked to share this with my 2yo nephew. he's recently learned what a berm is on his strider.
  • 2 0
 That was great!
  • 2 0
 Love the Fox fork.
  • 1 0
 Wowowowow! Was already a super fan. This is next level though!
  • 1 0
 That was outstanding! Even the credits were creative and whimsical!
  • 1 0
 Most excellent! My 9yo daughter will love watching this Smile
  • 1 0
 Very imaginative. My kids are watching this.
  • 1 0
 Fantastic.. best mtb vid for a looong time!
  • 1 0
 This made me incredibly happy!
  • 1 0
 This made me smile so much. Thanks everyone involved!
  • 1 0
 This was so lovely, great job Jill and everyone!
  • 1 0
 That was f*cking awesome!
  • 1 0
 Derek Frankowski is a legend!
  • 1 0
 Great content. Amazing talent. Thanks for sharing!
  • 1 0
 My 6 and 3 year old who love to ride loved this! That was awesome!
  • 1 0
 I've watched this like 10 times today with my 2 year old he loves it!
  • 1 0
 I came here for the outtakes.
  • 1 0
 My two favourite things together, MTB and cartoons!
  • 1 0
 Fliping awesome loved it! Had me smiling all the way through Smile
  • 1 0
 Great video- so much fun. Bravo to everyone involved in this one.
  • 1 0
 Has the video been removed? It's just a black rectangle!
  • 1 0
 What a creative way to blend two amazing talents!
  • 1 0
 That was fun to watch. I think I was smiling the the whole time.
  • 1 0
 Best bike video in quite a while.
  • 1 0
 My 7 yr old daughter loved it! Great video!
  • 1 0
 Soooo good
  • 1 0
 This is very cool
  • 1 0
 So cute Jill!! Smile
  • 2 2
 BETA exclusive posted on pinkbike hmmmm
  • 1 0
 That made my day.
  • 1 0
 Gold
  • 1 0
 Amazing!!! Well done.
  • 1 0
 That was fun
  • 1 0
 What a treat. Smile
  • 1 0
 Bellingham4life
  • 1 0
 LOVE this!
  • 1 0
 That was cool
  • 1 1
 They didn't steal the idea from ratboy's Bronson video at all...
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