Aardman-backed animation academy to draw on the talent of tomorrow

October 3, 2012

Bristol’s Aardman Animations has teamed up with the British Film Institute (BFI) to launch a pioneering partnership to develop the animation talent of tomorrow.

The move is part of a near £500m, five-year boost to the UK film industry announced by the BFI today which will focus on investment outside London. Money will also be spent on education and boosting audience choice.

Aardman was launched in 1972 and is best known for its Oscar-winning series of 'claymation' Wallace and Gromit films, although it also has a thriving commercial arm producing TV adverts as well as digital products, short films and cinema releases.

The BFI’s plan, called Film Forever, comes after an 18-month consultation with 1,000 people including industry bodies, education providers and members of the public.

BFI chief executive Amanda Nevill said: “We are investing where we think we can most make a difference, where we see potential for creative excellence and where we can be the supportive catalyst for change, innovation, business growth and jobs.”

Some £44.2m a year will be made in what the BFI is calling ‘education, learning and audiences’ until 2017.

There will also be a youth film academy, supported by Pinewood Studios and Bafta, where 16 to 19 year olds will benefit from events and masterclasses with industry professionals.

The BFI, which took over funding responsibilities after the UK Film Council was abolished last year, is to stage a UK-wide road-show next month, including a stop in Bristol, to start implementing the plan across the country.

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