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‘Affairs of the Art’ and ‘Ron’s Gone Wrong’ Top Winners at 2022 British Animation Awards

Joanna Quinn and Les Mills’ comedy about a larger-than-life Welsh housewife takes home three awards; Locksmith Animation’s tale of an awkward middle-schooler and his defective robot takes home Best Longform honors.

LONDON - The winners have been announced for the prestigious British Animation Awards 2022 at a ceremony held tonight at London’s BFI Southbank, presented by comedian Miles Jupp and sponsored by Hanna Barbera Studios Europe.  Now in their 26th year, the British Animation Awards (BAAs) attract the great and the good from one of the nation’s most successful creative industries to this biennial celebration of their craft.

Gathering momentum ahead of the Academy Awards later this month, Britain’s two Oscar-nominated short films Affairs of the Art and Robin Robin were triumphant in their categories with Affairs of the Art, picking up three awards: Best Short Film, Writers Award and Best Voice Performance (for 86-year-old Little Britain star Menna Trussler as ‘Beryl’).  Created by film-making partners Joanna Quinn and Les Mills, Affairs of the Art continues the story of larger-than-life Welsh housewife Beryl who has artistic ambitions on a grand scale.  Meanwhile Robin Robin, Aardman Animations’ beautiful Netflix Original film about an optimistic robin raised by a family of mice, won the award for Best Original Music for its score written by The Bookshop Band - Ben Please and Beth Porter.

London-based animation studio Magic Light Pictures was successful in two categories, with BBC-One Christmas special Zog and the Flying Doctors winning for Best Use of Sound and delightful Milkshake! and Sky Kids series Pip and Posy, picking up the award for Best Children’s Pre-School.  Meanwhile, the Best Children’s category was won by Fourth Wall’s feline-focused series Milo, also shown on Channel 5’s Milkshake!

One of the closest-fought categories of the night was the prestigious Best Long Form category, which saw victory for Locksmith Animations’ debut feature Ron’s Gone Wrong. Directed by Jean-Phillipe Vine, Sarah Smith and Octavio E Rodriguez, the film tells the story of a socially-awkward middle-schooler who befriends a defective robot.

Providing a breath of fresh air in the Best Animation in a Commercial category was Airwick for its Breath of Nature campaign, directed by Peter Szewczyk of Nerd Productions.  And rocking the Best Music Video Award was animator Ged Haney, with his video for Rocket Freudental’s ‘Der Stuhlkreis’.

A hard-hitting film featuring the voices of some of Hollywood’s hottest stars picked up the award for Best Factual.  Save Ralph, an animated short film warning about the cruelty of testing on animals, produced for the Humane Society International, was written and directed by Spencer Susser and featured the voices of Taika Waititi, Ricky Gervais, Zac Efron and Oliver Munn.  Meanwhile, the Social Good category was won by Typically, a film aiming to remove the taboo surrounding periods, produced for period poverty charity Bloody Good Period and directed by Anna Ginsburg and Caitlin McCarthy.

In two of the new categories for 2022, the Best Immersive Animation award was picked up by Grant Berry and Dane Winn’s The Beast, while the Wildcard category was won by Osbert Parker’s Timeline.

Continuing to challenge the status quo, the Cutting-Edge award was won by Jamie Jay Johnson and Asa Movshovitz’s E4 series about a role-playing fantasy game Dead PixelsAnd this year’s Design Award was won by Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey, a Netflix Original directed by Ian Spendloff, with VFX by Lucy Hare.

Some of the leading British animation courses were represented in the Best Undergraduate and Best Postgraduate Student film categories including nominees from Falmouth University School of Film and Television, University of Creative Arts in Farnham, Arts University Bournemouth, Royal College of Arts London and National Film & Television School. The winners were Renee Zahn’s (NFTS) O Black Hotel! for Best Postgraduate Student Film and Miles Jezuita’s (Arts University Bournemouth) Suburb for Best Undergraduate Student Film.

Introduced in 2020, The Lamb Award bridges the gap between current categories which recognise student achievements and general best-in-class awards, and is open to any young professionals working in the animation and VFX industry.  The winner of the 2022 Lamb Award is Production Coordinator Hodan Abdi, who was nominated by Illuminated Films.

Three awards on the night were decided by members of the public, voting for their favourites in a special online poll.  The winners of these audience awards were:  Tony Comley’s Time to Recover for Best Music Video, Uri Lotan’s Black Slide for Best Short Film and Sky Kids’ hit children’s series The Brilliant World of Tom Gates for the Children’s Choice Award.

The awards themselves (the BAAs) are unique artworks, featuring sheep, created especially for the occasion by a range of leading international and UK animation artists: a measure of the worldwide respect felt for British animation.  This year’s awards include designs by author/illustrators Liz Pichon and Rachel Bright and legendary film-maker Terry Gilliam.

BAA Director Helen Brunsdon and Producer Kieran Argo said: “We have been amazed at the quality of the entrants for this year’s British Animation Awards and would like to offer our heartfelt congratulations to all the winners and nominees.  After a particularly tough couple of years animation continues to be one of the most productive and creative industries in the UK”.

In a  message of support recorded for the awards, Julia Lopez, MP,  Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) praised the originality, quality and innovation of the UK’s world class animation workforce.

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.

The complete list of nominees and winners (in bold) is as follows:

Best Voice Performance category include:

  • Taika Waititi (Jojo Rabbit)
  • Ricky Gervais (After Life) for Save Ralph,
  • Ben Whishaw (No Time to Die) for The Adventures of Paddington
  • Bella Ramsay (Game of Thrones) for Hilda: The Fifty Year Night
  • Menna Trussler (Little Britain) as Beryl for Affairs of the Art
  • Bel Powley (The Morning Show) for Moominvalley

Best Long Form:

  • Aardman Animations’ Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas
  • Sesame Street’s The Monster at the End of the Story
  • Ron’s Gone Wrong – Dir: Jean- Philippe Vine, Sarah Smith, Octavio E Rodriguez (Co-Director)

Best Children’s Series:

  • The Brilliant World of Tom Gates – Sky Kids Original
  • Milo - Channel 5 Milkshake - Dir: Chris Capstick
  • Hilda: The Deerfox - Netflix

Best Animation in a Commercial:

  • The Girl Who Built a Rocket for WaterAid UK
  • Breath of Nature for Airwick – Dir: Peter Szewczyk
  • Save Ralph for the Humane Society International
  • Moto GP Returns for MotoGP.

Best Music Video:

  • Rocket Freudental – Der Stuhlkreis (Dir: Ged Haney)
  • Mama Jerk and the Ladyfinger – Mountain (Harrison Fleming)
  • Foo Fighters – Chasing Birds (Emlyn Davies, Josh Hicks)
  • Christy Moore – The Voyage (Jessica Patterson)
  • Jamie Cullum – Age of Anxiety (Neil Pymer)

Best Children’s Pre-School:

  • Hey Duggee
  • The Adventures of Paddington
  • Circle Square
  • Milo
  • Pip and Posy – Dir: Jeroen Jaspaert, Matt Tea  

Best Short Film Award:

  • FlattenTheCurve#1 - Studio Desk, Kathrin Steinbacher, Emily Downe
  • Meow or Never - Neeraja Raj
  • Save Ralph - Spencer Susser
  • Black Slide - Uri Lotan 
  • Affairs of the Art - Dir: Joanna Quinn

Best Undergraduate Film Award:

  • To be a Goat - Milda Kargaudaite
  • True Colours - Hanna Lea Wyttenbach
  • Case closed - Lucy Gatenby
  • @Scroll Alice - Céline Ufenast
  • Suburb - Dir: Miles Jezuita - Arts University Bournemouth

Best Postgraduate Student Film Award:

  • Black Hole! - Dir: Renee Zhan – National Film & Television School
  • Other Half - Lina Kalcheva
  • Eating In the Dark - Inari Sirola

Best Social Good Award:

  • Typically - Dir: Anna Ginsburg, Caitlin McCarthy
  • Diabetes Symptoms - Angie Phillips, Phoebe Halstead
  • Up River – a Shadventure on the River Severn - Tom Stubbs
  • You Being You - Kong Studio
  • Sinking Feeling - Mark Spokes

Best Original Music:

  • Sol - Gráinne Mc Guinness
  • I Am Odd - Benjamin Giroux, Mike Connaris 
  • Robin Robin - Music: The Bookshop Band – Ben Please and Beth Porter, Dir - Dan Ojari, Mikey Please
  • Edgar’s Christmas - Mike MacLennan
  • Love Monster – Super Sound Day - Theme music by Jeremy Warmsley; Score Composed by Esther Joy Lane; Score Composed by Hannah Charman

Writers Award:

  • Myles McLeod for Circle Square – Pizza Mystery - Greg McLeod
  • Les Mills for Affairs of the Art - Joanna Quinn
  • Peter Baynham and Sarah Smith for Ron’s Gone Wrong - Jean- Philippe Vine, Sarah Smith, Octavio E Rodriguez
  • Madeleine Brettingham for The Rubbish World of Dave Spud – Twinfestation - Edward Foster
  • Mark Burton and Giles Pilbrow for Shaun the Sheep – The Flight Before Christmas - Steve Cox

Cutting Edge Award (new to 2022 BAAs):

  • Save Ralph - Spencer Susser
  • Sub-Surface - Alex Robinson
  • Dead Pixels S2 - Dir: Jamie Jay Johnson, Asa Movshovitz

Wildcard Award (new to 2022 BAAs):

  • Timeline - Dir: Osbert Parker
  • Boris Johnson Eats A Pot Noodle In The Bath - Ross Butter
  • Strange - Cameron Carr
  • Squib – When All of This is Over - Baz Sells
  • Hench Girl Summer - Beatriz Antunes

Best Use of Sound

  • Elliot from Earth: Wednesday pt2 – Dir: Mic Graves, Tony Hull, Rhys Byfield, Mikey Please
  • Hilda: The Deerfox – Dir: Andy Coyle
  • The Rubbish World of Dave Spud: Burning Wheels – Dir: Ed Foster
  • Zog and the Flying Doctors – Adrian Rhodes, Dir Sean Mullen
  • Pip and Posy: Swapsies – Jason Heath, Dir Jeroen Jaspaert, Matt Tea

Best Design

  • Ron’s Gone Wrong – Dir: Jean- Philippe Vine, Sarah Smith, Octavio E Rodriguez (Co-Director)
  • Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey – Dir: Ian Spendloff
  • Raised By Wolves – Dir: Steve Small
  • Circle Square: Jungle House – Greg McLeod

Best Factual

  • Save Ralph – Dir: Spencer Susser
  • Timeline – Osbert Parker

Lamb Award

  • Sanna Räsänen  - Art Director and Puppet Maker- Nominated by One6th
  • Teifi Cadwallader – Animator - Nominated by Cloth Cat
  • Lisa-Mae Evans – Mid Look Development Artist Nominated by Blue Zoo Animation 
  • Emilie Brown - Lead Props Modeller - Nominated by Blue-Zoo Animation
  • Hodan Abdi – Production Co-ordinator - Nominated by Illuminated Films

British Animation Awards Audience Award: Short Film

  • Black Slide – Dir: Uri Lotan

British Animation Awards Audience Award: Music Video

  • Time to Recover – Dir: Tony Comley

Children’s Choice Award

  • The Brilliant World of Tom Gates – Dir: George Sawyer
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Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.