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Dublin Animation Film Festival 2016 Podcast Special

// Reviews (Festival)

Taking place in Dún Laoghaire (Dunleary) just south of the Irish capital, the Dublin Animation Film Festival (DAFF) is an under-reported gem nestled in one of Europe’s, if not the world’s most fervent areas of animation activity. This year Skwigly returned to take in the festival.

Consisting of a single day (usually two), this years festival contained everything you’d expect from a celebration of animation, special guests, industry insight and a competition screening of national and international shorts. The special guest at this years festival was Duke Johnson co-director of Anomalisa and partner at Starburns Industries. Johnson’s insights into the feature that he co-directed with Charlie Kaufman were a welcomed by delegates as he brought along a model of Lisa from the film, which after the talk caused a rush to the stage of students armed with cameraphones, all eager to photograph the film’s stop motion star. Johnson entertained the huge crowd that had gathered answering questions and posing for photographs.


Duke Johnson (centre)

The films at the festival consisted of an interesting mix of films that have been seen at festivals already with a notably strong student films selection held up by Le Gobelins and IADT films. Being the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising, the festival had a special award dedicated to the event, the Spirit of 1916 Award with three films directly referring to the uprising. Interestingly all three had a different message and voice Treehouse Republic’s Angel of 1916, based on the recorded memoirs of a freedom fighter at the time delivered a simple graphic style that complimented the gripping front line story, whilst espionage tale Granite and Chalk took the documentary route with archival images and documents being brought back to life by Stephen McNally’s distinctive animation style. Wigglywoo were on hand to deliver a more upbeat and educational take on the uprising, through a caricatured tale of a young family heading out for a loaf of bread being caught up in the heat of the conflict in Don’t Forget the Bread.

The awards evening, hosted by Michael Algar (Keg Kartoonz) provided a nice spotlight to the events films with the host offering 16, Dublin Animation Film Festival a light history lesson of the countries animation heritage for those in attendance. The awards handed out change every year based on a theme chosen by the craftsperson making them. This year the awards were crafted by Mateus Wojtas who based his design on a moment of peace during the 1916 uprising when a brief ceasefire was called to allow a park keeper time to feed the ducks!


The Mateus Wojtas sculpted DAFF 2016 awards

The winning films were.


Winner – Joining Dots – directed by Fiona Ryan – the National Film School, IADT
Honourable Mention –What’s the Point? – directed by Eleanor Bourke – the National Film School IADT


Granite and Chalk – NaomiCo – Winner


Winner -Angel of 1916 – Treehouse Republic Animation

Honourable Mention – A Coat Made Dark – Jack O’Shea, Still Films


Winner – Spoon – Markus Kemp
Honourable Mention – Portrait of a Windup Maker – Dario Perez


Winner – Three Little Ninjas Delivery Service: Damsel in Distress – Karim Rhellam and Kim Claeys
Honourable Mention – Ticking Away – Michael Sewnarain


Winner – The Last Day of a Condemned Man – Le Gobelins, France

Honourable Mention – Merlot – Giulia Martinelli and Marta Gennar – Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia – sede Piemonte


Winner – Ticking Away – Michael Sewnarain

Honourable Mention – Unhinged – directed by Tom Caulfield, Studio Okinami


Define Intervention – directed by Sean Cunningham, Irish School of Animation, BCFE.


Duke Johnson

With an estimated 1,500 people working at 22 companies in the Irish animation industry, festivals like DAFF are essential to the growing network of animators in the country. If this is what can be done in a single day, we’d love to see what can be done with more!

The Dublin Animation Film Festival will return in 2017. For more information visit the official website, follow the DAFF team on Twitter or like them on Facebook.

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