The Dot and the Line: A Romance in Lower Mathematics (ISBN 1-58717-066-3) is a book written and illustrated by Norton Juster, first published by Random House in 1963. The title is an obvious reference to Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin Abbott Abbott.
In 1965, famed animator Chuck Jones and the MGM Animation/Visual Arts studio adapted The Dot and the Line into a 10-minute animated short film for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, narrated by Robert Morley. The Dot and the Line won the 1965 Academy Award for Animated Short Film.
As the main characters in the short are simple geometric shapes, very distinct ways of depicting their emotion and thoughts are used. Rather than manipulating facial expressions to convey emotion, tiny changes in movement are utilized. In one case, the line expanding and detracting slightly is used to represent a sigh. Sound also plays a huge role in giving these shapes life. Changes in music set the tone of different scenes, and effectively depict the emotions of the characters on screen at the time. This method is accompanied by mood-setting background imagery, and the end result is that these simple shapes become believable as living things.