23 March 2018 The Irish Film & Television Network
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Festivals News

Oscar Buzz Continues to Build Around Cartoon Saloons' ‘The Breadwinner’
29 Nov 2017 : Nathan Griffin
Irish Animation studio Cartoon Saloon have enjoyed an extremely successful festival run as the build up to the Academy Awards season has seen their Oscar contender, ‘The Breadwinner’ receive top awards at a host of festivals.

The film which is directed by Nora Twomey and backed by executive producer Angelina Jolie follows Parvana, a girl growing up in Afghanistan in 2001. Following her father’s arrest, she dresses as a boy in order to work and provide for her family. Together with her best friend Shauzia, she risks discovery to try to find out if her father is still alive.

Following its world premiere at TIFF, ‘The Breadwinner' picked up the Grand Prize at the ‘Animation Is Film Festival’ in Hollywood, back in October, which also saw Nora Twomey pick up the audience award. Nora was also honoured at the first ‘Women In Animation Diversity Awards’ in Vancouver last month for her efforts in tackling cultural differences and the gender pay gap.

The film is being distributed by Gkids in the USA, which following its release on November 17th, has had to add additional screenings in the US due to the overwhelming demand from audiences. In the UK & Ireland, the film is distributed by StudioCanal and releases on May 25th 2018.

The Irish Film & Television Academy (IFTA) held a special Academy Members Q&A with Nora Twomey following the Academy's screening of 'The Breadwinner' on November 7th. Twomey, who is the co-founder and creative director of Cartoon Saloon, has steered the success of a number of the company's projects in recent years, alongside fellow Directors Paul Young and Tom Moore receiving Oscar Nominations along the way for both 'The Secret of Kells' and the 'Song Of The Sea', which won the IFTA Best Irish Film Award in 2015.

‘The Breadwinner’ entered production in May 2016 and is a co-production between Aircraft Pictures Canada, Luxembourg’s Melesine Productions and Cartoon Saloon in association with Angelina Jolie’s Jolie Pas Productions. 

Producers are Anthony Leo (‘What’s up Warthogs!’), Tomm Moore (‘Song of the Sea’) and Paul Young (‘Puffin Rock’). Executive producers are Angelina Jolie, Mimi Polk Gitlin, Karim Amer, Jehane Noujaim and Gerry Shirren. 

‘The Lesser Blessed’ writer/director Anita Doron co-wrote the screenplay with Deborah Ellis, based on Ellis’ own novel of the same name, which was published in 2000.

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