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Finalists announced for British Animation Awards 2024

February 14, 2024

The finalists have been announced for the prestigious British Animation Awards 2024. Rewarding the best in UK animation across a variety of categories, the British Animation Awards (BAAs) attract the great and the good from across the industry to this biennial celebration of their craft.

Now in its 28th year, this year’s BAA ceremony is being held at London’s BFI Southbank on March 7th. Presented by the German Comedy Ambassador Henning Wehn, the awards will unveil the latest names to join the list of illustrious winners from past years which includes Nick Park, Joanna Quinn, Tim Burton, Martin Freeman, Simon Tofield and Gorillaz.

Competing for honours in the prestigious Best Feature Film category are: Aardman Animation’s latest blockbuster for Netflix; Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget (dir: Sam Fell), which sees a band of fearless fowl flock together to save chicken-kind from a new threat: A Cat Called Dom, Will Anderson and Ainslie Henderson’s inventive film about a son dealing with his mother’s cancer diagnosis; Lupus Films’ hand-drawn animated feature film based on Michael Morpurgo’s classic adventure story about a boy washed up on a seemingly deserted island, Kensuke’s Kingdom (dir: Neil Boyle, Kirk Hendry); Cartoon Saloon and Dog Ear’s Netflix feature about an island and its avian inhabitants facing the perils of climate change – Puffin Rock and the New Friends (dir: Jeremy Purcell); and Sky Cinema’s fantasy comedy feature based on the Terry Pratchett novel about a streetwise cat and his gang of rats, The Amazing Maurice (dir: Toby Genkel, Florian Westermann).

In the Best Voice Performance category, this year’s finalists include the star-studded ensemble casts for Channel 4’s seasonal special based on Judith Kerr’s classic book Mog’s Christmas (pictured), Apple Studios’ academy award-winning short film based on the book by Charlie Mackesy, The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse and Sky Cinema’s animated feature The Amazing Maurice.

The Best Long Form category will be battled out between: The Illuminated Film Company’s special about Edinburgh Zoo’s famous brown bear A Bear Named Wojtek (dir. Iain Gardner); Bad Robot/NoneMore Productions’  Oscar-winning short about the unexpected friendship between The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse (dir. Peter Baynton, Charlie Mackesy); Blink Industry’s animated re-telling of the classic story Peter and the Wolf by musicians Gavin Friday and Bono (dir. Stephen McNally, Elliot Dear); and Lupus Films’ festive hand-drawn animation about everybody’s favourite cat, Mog’s Christmas (dir.  Robin Shaw).

The prestigious Best Short Film award will be contested by Christopher at Sea by Tom C J Brown, The Debutante by Elizabeth Hobbs and All Gucci My Broski by Harry Plowden.

ITV series dominate the Best Children’s Series award with contenders including The Sound Collector – Harp Strings, The Rubbish World of Dave Spud – Moonbreaker and Lloyd of the Flies.  Channel Five’s Milkshake!’s Tweedy and Fluff completes the nominations.

Up for the Best Animation in a Commercial award are Blown Away for Admiral, The Great British Bake Off Official Trailer for Channel 4 and The Lords of Water for The Lords of Water.

Meanwhile, animated films Carry You for Ruelle, Tell Me Where to Go for JPEGMAFIA x Danny Brown and Late Nights for DeathbyRomy/Adult Swim are competing for Best Music Video.

In the Best Children’s Pre-School category, family favourites Hey Duggee, The Adventures of Paddington, The Very Small Creatures and Odo are battling it out to win the hearts of the very youngest animation fans, while the category for Best International Animated Series will be fought out between Captain Fall, Milo, The Tiny Chef Show and Supa Team 4. 

Recognising films which tell real stories through animation, the Best Factual Award will be contested by Jeremy, My Father by Miranda Peyton Jones, Something More by Mary Martins, Another Presence by Simon Ball and A Taste for Music by Jordan Antonowicz-Behnan.

And for work not deemed to fit easily into existing categories, nominations for the Wildcard category include: The Beatles Vs The Stones (Andrew Kelleher), Two Gracious Uncles Smooched to the Beat (Jon Dunleavy) and Hairy Houdini (Trevor Hardy).

Some of the leading British animation courses are represented in the Best Undergraduate and Best Postgraduate student film categories including nominees from Arts University Bournemouth, University of the Arts London and a clean sweep for the National Film & Television School in the Postgraduate category.

Hoping to make a difference in the world, the Social Good award sees nominations for: Change the Ending, a film directed by againstallodds for Alzheimer’s Research UK; Ask Me How I Am, a film about young people’s experience of self-harm directed by Zan Barberton and Joseph Clark for mental heal charity Fullscope; and Inner Polar Bear, a film exploring the implications of climate change by Gerald Conn.

In the Best Original Music category, the nominations are Stuart Hancock for Kensuke’s Kingdom, 2022 winners Beth Porter and Ben Please for Tweedy & Fluff and David Arnold for Mog’s Christmas.

And flying the flag for scribes in the Writer’s Award are Andrew Barnett Jones and Ciaran Murtagh for Lloyd of the Flies: Gummy Goes Off, Frank Cottrell-Boyce for Kensuke’s Kingdom, Edward Foster for The Rubbish World of Dave Spud – Olden Days and Hamish Steele for Dead End: Paranormal Park – 210 The Watcher’s Test.

Meanwhile, the Best Design award nominations are for Ms Marvel, Odo and Puffin Rock and the New Friends (dir. Jeremy Purcell).  And the Best Use of Sound will be contested by Kensuke’s Kingdom, The Smeds and the Smoos and The Sound Collector – Harp Strings.

New to the BAAs since 2022, the Cutting Edge award will be decided between Beware of Trains by Emma Calder, Alec Smith’s Silly Duck, Wallace & Gromit in the Grand Getaway (Bram Ttwheam and Finbar Hawkins) and The Line Experiments by Antoine Perez.

Introduced in 2020 the Lamb Award continues to recognise rising stars in any field of animation and VFX production. Nominated by established studios, this year the nominees include young professionals from Blue Zoo and Skylark Films/Big Squid Ink.

While the bulk of the awards are decided by a panel of industry experts, the short film Audience Award is voted for by 14 screening partners and their audietonces throughout the UK.

The ever-popular Children’s Choice Award will be decided by students at St. Mary Redcliffe Primary School in Bristol from a shortlist including: Dead End: Paranormal Park, Supertato, The Heroic Quest of the Valiant Prince Ivandoe – The Prince and the Valiant Quest and Lego City – No Limits – (episode 6).

BAA Director Helen Brunsdon and Producer Kieran Argo commented: “Despite a myriad of changes and challenges facing the animation industry in the UK over the last couple of years, the sector remains thriving and productive. The quality and quantity of the work submitted to the BAAs is evidence of the dedication and creative ingenuity of all who work in animation and is a great indication of how UK animation continues to punch above its bodyweight on the world stage.”

The BAAs are the only awards to recognise all forms of animation and reward the work of both new and established animators across all aspects of the UK Animation scene, from student work to commercials, children’s entertainment, short and experiential films, music videos and new technologies.

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