The 2019 Irish Animation Awards were held Saturday in Dingle, with Paper Panther Productions striding to the fore with three awards: Best Animation, Best Design & Art Direction and the inaugural Best Newcomer Award for The Bird and the Whale. Organized by Animation Ireland and celebrated as part of the Animation Dingle festival and conference, the IAAs saw large delegations from Netflix, Disney, the BBC, Amazon Prime, Nickelodeon and other major international players.
Other notable honorees included Cartoon Saloon’s The Breadwinner, Brown Bag Films for Vampirina, Boulder Media/Windmill Lane’s Danger Mouse, and Murakami Award honoree Nora Twomey (director, The Breadwinner).
“The evening was a tremendous success and once again highlights the vibrancy and talent within our sector. This country really punches above its weight when it comes to animation and the number of senior executives and producers from overseas who were there last night pays testament to that,” said Animation Ireland Chairperson Moe Honan. “On behalf of Animation Ireland I would like to say a very hearty congratulations to all the winners. The level of quality this year has been truly outstanding from all the entrants and it really highlights the magnificent talent of the animation sector in Ireland.”
This year’s award were the biggest yet, with four new awards categories and a huge increase in the number of entrants. There are 16 categories in total, up from 12 in 2017 — including the Kids’ Choice Award, chosen by primary school children across the country.
The 2019 Irish Animation Awards were sponsored by RTÉ, Screen Ireland, Animation Skillnet, Philip Lee, CelAction, Screen Skills Ireland, Brophy Gillespie and Gorilla Post.
Winners of each category received a Phenakistoscope (early animation device) inspired statuette designed by animator, filmmaker and teacher Eimhin McNamara.
Winners of The Irish Animation Awards 2019:
Best Animated Preschool Series (up to 6 years)
Vampirina: Going Batty – Brown Bag Films
Best Animated Short Film
The Wiremen – Jessica Patterson/ JAM Media
Best International Short Film
All the Things – Chris Guyot & Paul McMahon (USA/IRL)
Best Writer for Preschool Animation (up to 6 years)
Becca’s Bunch: Acorn King – Shane Langan & Amy Stephenson
Best Writer for an Animated Series
Vampirina: Home Scream Home – Chris Nee/Brown Bag Films
Best VFX as part of Animated TV Series or Film
Space Chickens in Space – Paul Rutledge/Gingerbread Animation
Best Animation for Apps, Gaming and Interactive
Aurora – Pink Kong Studios
Best Design and Art Direction
The Bird and the Whale – Carol Freeman/Paper Panther Productions
Best Director of an Animated TV Series
Danger Mouse – Aidan McAteer/Boulder Media
The Bird and the Whale – Eimhin McNamara & Carol Freeman/Paper Panther
Danger Mouse: Melted – Sanj Sen and Dominic Lawrence/Boulder Media
Best Sound Design
Danger Mouse – Dominic Lawrence and Sol O’Carroll/Windmill Lane
Best Irish Feature Film or Special
The Breadwinner – Nora Twomey/Cartoon Saloon
Paper Panther Productions
Kids’ Choice Award For Best Preschool Animated Series (up to 6 years)
The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special – Brown Bag Films
Kids Choice Award For Best Animated Series (6-12 years)
Space Chickens in Space – Gingerbread Animation
Nora Twomey, Cartoon Saloon