Saturday, 6 March 2010

And The Oscar Goes To...

It's been a landmark year for animation, with 3D becoming the norm and the largely-animated Avatar one of the favourites for the Best Movie Academy Award.

In the category of Best Animated Feature Film, most of them have been massive hits and need no introduction from me. Walt Disney have two nominations, the massively-successful Up and the recently-released The Princess And The Frog, with its return to classic 2D animation and Disney's first black princess.

Coraline and Fantastic Mr Fox have also been big box office draws aimed at the kids over the year. The fifth nominee, however, is one you've probably not heard of.

The Secret Of Kells is an Irish/French/Belgian co-production which has had virtually no release outside of these countries. It's a story inspired by the Book of Kells, the famous illuminated manuscript of the four Gospels which is considered as Ireland's national treasure.

The film is set in the 9th century and is the story of 12 year old Brendan who lives with his stern uncle, Abbot Cellach, then becomes the apprentice of the inspirational illuminator Brother Aidan. Monks, Vikings, fairies, religion, art and folklore combine into a warm, rich fantasy. Its visual style borrows heavily from the Celtic art that inspired it, making The Secret Of Kells a refreshing alternative to its big budget, high profile Oscar rivals.

Sit back and enjoy a selection of clips.

Best Animated Short Film

There are very few opportunities to see short animations on TV or the big screen but, thanks to the wonders of YouTube, here are 4 of this year's 5 nominees in full, plus a special treat for fans of Wallace and Gromit.

French Roast

Fabrice O. Joubert

A Pumpkin Factory/Bibo Films Production

Some beautiful characters star in this hilarious French comedy of errors.

Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty

Nicky Phelan and Darragh O'Connell

A Brown Bag Films Production

2D and 3D animation mix as the bitter and twisted Granny O'Grimm tells the classic bedtime story.

The Lady And The Reaper

Javier Recio Gracia

A Kandor Graphics and Green Moon Production

It's Death versus Doctor Dishy in this bizarre, inventive fight for an old lady's life.


Nicolas Schmerkin

An Autour de Minuit Production

Thousands of corporate logos are used to create this amazingly original comment on American society. Contains bad language and violence against junk food!

Logorama from Marc Altshuler - Human Music on Vimeo.

A Matter of Loaf And Death

Nick Park

An Aardman Animations Production

Britain's favourite Claymation inventor and his long-suffering hound do battle with the murderous Piella Bakewell.

Here's an exclusive 20 minute making-of feature.

The Oscars will be presented at the Academy Awards ceremony this Sunday, 7th March 2010.

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