- Triggerfish picks up best animated short film nomination
Just by being nominated, we have already won, said a delighted Stuart Forrest, 47, the chief executive of Triggerfish Animation Studios whose movie, Revolting Rhymes, has been nominated for an Oscar in the Best Animated Short Film category for the 90th Academy Awards.
Cape Town-based Triggerfish, which has already notched up a string of awards and is considered the leading animation studio on the continent, created the animation for Revolting Rhymes, an adaptation of master storyteller Roald Dahl and illustrator Quentin Blake’s classic book of surprising fairytales.
The film was produced by Magic Light Pictures and animated at Magic Light’s Berlin studio and Triggerfish.
“The nomination alone gives us fantastic international exposure and gives Triggerfish a huge amount of credibility.
“It also acknowledges that we can produce high-quality, international-standard animation, which in turn promotes and will grow the business internationally. So we are already winners,” Forrest said.
He was educated at Victoria Park High School and the former Port Elizabeth Technikon in Nelson Mandela Bay, where his mother still lives.
While Revolting Rhymes last year won Best Animation at the Bafta (British Academy Film Awards) Children’s Awards, pipping the likes of Shaun the Sheep and The Amazing World of Gumball to take the honours, Forrest said the Oscar nomination meant Triggerfish was being recognised at the pinnacle of the film industry.
Forrest said working on a Dahl creation was an absolute privilege.
“Films based on books written by top writers would normally be taken on by the likes of Steven Spielberg.
“I have always been passionate about animation, so I certainly love what I do. We have a huge team of 85, with five partners in the business.
“Every single person plays a vital role at the company. So the nomination has come about from a team effort and we are very pleased at the success of the film and the role we played in this,” he said.
A total of 35 people from Triggerfish were involved in Revolting Rhymes.
“Producing animation is very labour intensive, but it also requires the appropriate software to produce, which has, however, become very standardised in the industry.
“This is beneficial as it means we use more or less the same software used in other countries and it also keeps costs down as we are not having to frequently update and invest in new software,” he said.
Forrest, who studied fine arts in the Bay before settling in Cape Town, said the focus at Triggerfish, which also produces television series, games and apps, was primarily on international markets.
“We have another feature film in the pipeline and two TV series, all for international markets. Details will be made available in the near future.”
Commenting on Cape Town’s growing presence in the international film industry, Forrest acknowledged an increase in volume of films as well as quality.
“We are even attracting a lot of work from Johannesburg,” he said.