Plympton’s Hot Dog Lands Baton

New York’s indie darling Bill Plympton added yet another award to his ever-growing kudos gallery for his 2008 short Hot Dog this weekend.The Annie-nominated short was the winner of the Red Baton for Best Animated Short at the 2009 Red Stick Animation Festival in Baton Rouge. Here is the list of all the Red Baton winners:

Best Student Short: Office Noise (Mads Johansen, Torben Sottrup, Karsten Madsen, Laerke Enemark; Denmark)

Best Animation for Commercials: Virgin Media’s Therapy (Rob Cazin)

Best Animation for Young Audiences: Curse of Skull Rock (Ben Smith)

Best Animated Music Video: Eatliz’s Hey (Guy Ben Shetrit, Israel)

Best Experimental/Visual Music: Escape from the Temple (Zhou Zing, China)

Best Student Experimental/Visual Music: Lost Utopia (Mirai Mizue, Japan)

The Los Angeles-based team of Greg Farren, Jeremy Milton and Ben Liu’s animation project The Crazy 8‘s (pictured on top) was the winner of this year’s Pitch Event. The visually arresting action-adventure comedy centers on a team of interplanetary 1950s-style Hot Rodders who have a wild variety of adventures as they encounter aliens on different planets.

Henn Receives Lifetime Achievement Prize

The jam-packed festival closed with a special dinner honoring Disney’s veteran animator Mike Henn, who was a supervising animator for Ariel (The Little Mermaid), Belle (Beauty and the Beast) and young Simba (The Lion King). The talented and prolific animator received the festival’s Second Lifetime Achievement Award (Disney’s Andreas Deja was the inaugural recipient last year). Fittingly, he is the man behind Disney’s latest animated heroine from Louisiana, Tiana, the star of the upcoming feature The Princess and the Frog. A visibly touched Henn accepted the prize from festival director Stacey Simmons, former Disney VP of feature animation and current Exodus Film Group president Max Howard and Baton Rouge mayor Melvin “Kip” Holden.

For more info about the event, visit www.redstickfestival.org.