Naas animator in running for BAFTA award

There are not many people who can claim to have a BAFTA nomination under their belt.

There are not many people who can claim to have a BAFTA nomination under their belt.

However, Naas native, Jean Herlihy can now firmly print it on her CV, and come the awards night on November 27, the animator could be clutching the famous statuette.

Jean, who now lives in Dublin, is the lead animator, along with Shane Collins, on the cartoon Octonauts. This animation is currently on RTE and has been nominated in the Best Pre-School Animation category of the Children’s BAFTA awards!

Jean works for Brown Bag Films in Dublin. The news of the nomination filtered through last Monday week, October 31.

“We had been short listed quite a few times before but nothing came of it so this time, they kept it fairly quiet so when they did tell us, it came as a big surprise. We were delighted,” explained Jean.

The concept for the cartoon was based on a book created by Meomi and the programme was developed by Chorion in conjunction with Brown Bag Films.

The other nominees in the category are Rastamouse, Peppa Pig and Little Princess. The Children’s BAFTA’s take place in London on Saturday November 27.

The former St. Mary’s Secondary School pupil, who also attended Edenderry Secondary School when she lived there, is looking forward to the awards night.

“There are a few of us going over, but there are not that many tickets available. It would be great to win it but just to get a BAFTA nomination is in itself an achievement,” she added.

Work on the cartoon finished last Christmas and it took 18 months to make. It has proven hugely popular both with adults and children. It has even resulted in the production of its own range of toy figures.

The 3D animation specialist always had a passion for creative pursuits.

“I always loved art in school and I was always thinking of going in that direction. I made up my mind and at the last minute I decided to go to Ballyfermot. When I finished my course I went straight to Codemaster, a games company and from there I went to Brown Bag Films,” she said.

Brown Bag has worked on many animations including the American production, Olivia and Octonauts 2 is in the pipeline.