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RTE GAVE JUST 2PC TO OSCAR MOVIE IT HELPED 'CO-FUND'

RTE provided less than 2pc of the cash behind two of Ireland's Oscar-nominated animation projects, despite the broadcaster taking credit for its role in "co-funding" them.

The animation industry, in the limelight following several nods for the Academy Awards, has said the national broadcaster's support for the films -- Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty and The Secret Of Kells -- was "relatively insignificant".

Industry chiefs are calling for greater backing from RTE and want to see more Irish-produced animation on the airwaves here.

In a statement at the time of the announcement, RTE said: "It's a huge source of pride and gratification that we have played a role in supporting world-class talent."

But of the €6m it cost to produce the two animated films, RTE contributed just €100,000. This is out of just €300,000 per year that the broadcaster spends on Irish animation.

"It's important to point out that while RTE did provide some support, the level is relatively insignificant in terms of the total cost of producing these projects," said Damian Farrell of Animation Ireland. "So RTE's credit just needs a bit of context. Imagine how much more positivity RTE could garner if they truly got behind animation production."

The Animation CEO Forum, an industry body under Animation Ireland, has criticised RTE for its "failure" to support, develop and fund the Animation sector in Ireland.

Members point out the broadcaster's €300,000 a year funding is less than 1pc of RTE's total spend on independent commissioned programmes.

"As a Public Service Broadcaster, RTE's remit is to produce children's programmes just as they commission drama and documentaries," said Cathal Gaffney, managing director of Brown Bag Films -- the production company behind Granny O'Grimm.

aphelan@herald.ie


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