TheBirdand theWhale

Who won a 2019 Irish Animation trophy?

Paper Panther Productions' The Bird and the Whale (pictured) and Brown Bag Films' Vampirina won multiple awards at the biennial event in Dingle.
March 25, 2019

Dublin, Ireland-based studios Brown Bag Films and Paper Panther Productions took home the most trophies at the third Irish Animation Awards over the weekend, with three wins apiece. The biennial event took place on March 23 during the Animation Dingle conference in Ireland.

Brown Bag’s Vampirina (Disney Junior) won best animated preschool series and Chris Nee grabbed the best writer for an animated series prize for her work on season one episode Vampirina: Home Scream Home. The company also snapped up the event’s kid’s choice award for best preschool animated series for The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special.

Paper Panther Productions, meanwhile, grabbed the best newcomer award and a pair of trophies—best animation and best design and art direction—for its oil paint on glass animated film The Bird and the Whale (pictured). Written and directed by Paper Panther’s Carol Freeman, the film is a survivor story of a lost baby whale who befriends a caged bird at sea.

Oscar-nominated Irish director Nora Twomey (The Breadwinner) was the recipient of the Murakami award for outstanding achievement in animation. Previous winners include Aidan Hickey (An Inside Job), Cathal Gaffney and Darragh O’Connell of Brown Bag Films, Richie Baneham (Avatar) and Tomm Moore (Song of the Sea).

Along with the Irish Animation Awards and the The Animation Dingle Student Awards, this year’s conference featured keynote speeches from Twomey, Oscar-nominated writer Bob Peterson (Finding Nemo) and Golden Globe-winning producer Bonnie Arnold (How to Train Your Dragon).

Here is the complete list of 2019 winners:

Best animated preschool series (up to 6 years)
Vampirina: Going Batty (Brown Bag Films)

Best animated short film
The Wiremen (JAM Media’s Jessica Patterson)

Best international short film
All the Things (Chris Guyot and Paul McMahon)

Best writer for a preschool animated series (up to 6 years)
Becca’s Bunch: Acorn King (Shane Langan and Amy Stephenson for JAM Media)

Best writer for an animated series
Vampirina: Home Scream Home (Chris Nee for Brown Bag Films)

Best VFX as part of an animated TV series or film
Space Chickens in Space (Gingerbread Animation’s Paul Rutledge)

Best animation for apps, gaming and interactive
Aurora (Pink Kong Studios)

Best design and art direction
The Bird and the Whale (Paper Panther Productions’ Carol Freeman)

Best director of an animated TV series
Danger Mouse (Boulder Media’s Aidan McAteer)

Best animation
The Bird and the Whale (Paper Panther’s Eimhin McNamara, Carol Freeman)

Best music
Danger Mouse: Melted (Sanj Sen and Dominic Lawrence for Boulder Media)

Best sound design
Danger Mouse (Dominic Lawrence and Sol O’Carroll for Windmill Lane)

Best Irish feature film or special
The Breadwinner (Cartoon Saloon, Nora Twomey)

Best newcomer
Paper Panther Productions

Kid’s choice award for best preschool animated series (up to 6 years)
The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special (Brown Bag Films)

Kid’s choice award for best animated series (six to 12 years)
Space Chickens in Space (Gingerbread Animation)

The Murakami award
Nora Twomey

About The Author
Jeremy is the Features Editor of Kidscreen specializing in the content production, broadcasting and distribution aspects of the global children's entertainment industry. Contact Jeremy at



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