Animated Encounters Names Winners

U.K. animation fest Animated Encounters concluded Saturday, April 23, at Bristol’s Watershed with the presentation of the annual awards ceremony. Hosted by Bush and Troy from GWR Bristol’s popular morning show, the event saw awards go to Norwegian director Pjotr Sapegin for Through My Thick Glasses; French filmmakers Oury Atlan, Thibault Berian and Damien Ferrie for Overtime; and Paul Taylor for In the Rough.

The stop-motion-animated Through My Thick Glasses proved the most popular film at the festival, taking the Audience Award. The short film centers on an old man whose grand-daughter refuses to wear her cap unless she is told a story. The grandfather then relates his experiences as a young man determined to join the Norwegian resistance and defeat the German occupation during WWII. As the winner of the Audience Award, the film will go on to be a finalist for the prestigious Cartoon d’Or, to be presented at the next Cartoon Forum in Kolding, Denmark.

The OLC/Rights Entertainment International Newcomer Award was given to the Overtime, a black-and-white CG-animated tribute to the late Jim Henson. The film has a dead puppeteer being serenaded by an army of Kermit-like frogs. The jury chose the film for "its pitch-perfect balance of stunning music, visual story and faultless production values."

Meanwhile, In the Rough picked up the Cosgrove Hall Films Children’s Jury Award. A jury of young people aged 11-18 from Bath, Bristol and Clevedon picked the Oscar-nominated short produced by Blur Studios. In the film. a caveman is evicted from his cozy cave by his irate wife only to find that a bachelor’s life in the wild isn’t all its cracked up to be.

Animated Encounters is funded by Bristol City Council and South West Screen, with assistance from the UK Film Council. Principal sponsors include Cartoon Network, DreamWorks SKG, OLC, Hewlett Packard and Aardman Animations. Other major sponsors include BBC Worldwide, Cosgrove Hall Films and HIT Ent.