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Oscar bravo - delight as Irish firm Cartoon Saloon gets Academy Award nomination for 'Song of the Sea'

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Tom Moore and Paul Young (on couch) of Cartoon Saloon in Kilkenny pictured with the crew after being nominated yesterday for an Oscar.
Picture Dylan Vaughan.

Tom Moore and Paul Young (on couch) of Cartoon Saloon in Kilkenny pictured with the crew after being nominated yesterday for an Oscar. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar.

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar.

Still from Irish animation Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar

Still from Irish animation Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea' which has been nominated for an Oscar.

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea' which has been nominated for an Oscar.

Song of the Sea by Irish animator Tomm Moore is a hit with critics in the US

Song of the Sea by Irish animator Tomm Moore is a hit with critics in the US

Still from Irish animation Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar

Still from Irish animation Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar

IRELAND’S CREATIVE HUB: Above, a scene from the sumptous Song of the Sea, made by Cartoon Saloon and featuring the voices of Brendan Gleeson and Fionnula Flanagan.

IRELAND’S CREATIVE HUB: Above, a scene from the sumptous Song of the Sea, made by Cartoon Saloon and featuring the voices of Brendan Gleeson and Fionnula Flanagan.

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Tom Moore and Paul Young (on couch) of Cartoon Saloon in Kilkenny pictured with the crew after being nominated yesterday for an Oscar. Picture Dylan Vaughan.

There was quite the celebration yesterday when Irish film Song of the Sea was nominated for an Oscar.

Cartoon Saloon, an Irish animation firm based in Kilkenny, is in the running for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.

Another of their films, Secret of Kells, was previously nominated for an Oscar in the same category in 2010.

Song of the Sea tells the story of Ben and his little sister, Saoirse - the last Seal-child - who embark on a fantastic journey across a fading world of ancient legend and magic in an attempt to return to their home by the sea.

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 Annie Atkins who worked as lead designer on the Grand Budapest Hotel.

Annie Atkins who worked as lead designer on the Grand Budapest Hotel.

Annie Atkins who worked as lead designer on the Grand Budapest Hotel.

The film takes inspiration from the mythological Selkies of Irish folklore, who live as seals in the sea but become humans on land.

The all-star cast includes Brendan Gleeson, Fionnula Flanagan, David Rawle, Lisa Hannigan, Pat Shortt and Jon Kenny.

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A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar.

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar.

A still from Irish animation 'Song of the Sea which has been nominated for an Oscar.

The music was composed by Bruno Coulais and Irish band Kíla, both of whom previously collaborated on The Secret of Kells.

Other films in the category include Big Hero 6, The Boxtrolls, How To Train Your Dragon 2 and The Tale of Princess Kaguya.

Speaking about the nomination, one of the film's creators, Tomm Moore, described it as "incredible".

"Two for two is pretty amazing. We're delighted," he said. "With Secret of Kells we weren't expecting it but this time around people were saying it so I was quite nervous about the nominations.

"I took my sandwich down to the river at lunch because I couldn't watch and my wife rang me and told me which was nice," he added.

While the team haven't booked their flights just yet, Tomm joked that he'll "squeeze into the same tux I wore the last time".

The Irish Film Board, which funded Song of the Sea, paid tribute to animators Moore, Will Collins, Paul Young and the entire Cartoon Saloon team.

Song of the Sea will have its Irish premiere at the Galway Film Fleadh in July and will be distributed to cinemas nationwide in both English and Irish.

In other Irish interest, Lost Stars a song from the film Begin Again - directed by Dubliner John Carney - has also received a nomination. Carney's previous hit, Once, scooped the Best Original Song Oscar for Falling Slowly in 2008.

The Grand Budapest Hotel, starring Saoirse Ronan, and Birdman lead the way with nine nominations apiece for the awards show, which will be held in LA next month.

Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel has been nominated for Best Design and production designer Annie Atkins, who lives in Dublin, wishes she could be there with her colleagues on the night.

"I'm delighted with all the nominations. It would be great to see Adam and Anna up on the stage there next month for the design award at the Oscars," she told the Herald.

"It was a real privilege working with them and Wes. I won't be on the red carpet, I'll be at home drinking champagne in my pjs."

Herald

Online Editors