‘Stories Worth Telling’ Free Animation Event as part of JDIFF

Animation has come a long way from Saturday morning cartoons for kids. It is now widely acknowledged that animation can connect with all ages and can deal with the most serious of issues. The audience and the technology may be constantly changing, but no matter where and how animation is made, or who it is made for, story is still the key ingredient. Story can bring us together, it can help us make sense of the world we live in and, most importantly, a good story keeps us watching and keeps us thinking.

But how do writers and directors decide what stories are worth telling? How do they find the right subject matter for the right audience? The guest panel will draw on their own unique and varied experiences of creating stories worth telling to discuss these and other story-related issues, such as the writing process, deciding on tone and style, and balancing the artistic collaborative nature of animation with writing and directing. Among the speakers confirmed are Brenda Chapman, Louise Ridgeway and Sydney Padua.

Panel Guests

Brenda Chapman

Brenda Chapman was the first woman to direct an animated feature from a major studio, when she directed The Prince of Egypt in 1998. Brenda is also the original writer and director of Pixar’s upcoming animated feature Brave. Brenda’s other film credits include Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, WALL-E and Up.

Sydney Padua

Sydney Padua is an animator, a graphic artist and author of the web comic The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage. She was a story development artist at Warner Brothers Feature Animation, and wrote and directed the multi-award winning short Agricultural Report for the Irish Film Board. Sydney’s film credits as a character animator include The Golden Compass, Open Season and The Iron Giant.

Louise Ridgeway

Louise Ridgeway has worked as an animator in the games industry for over 12 years. She is currently Animation Director at Rare Ltd and has been responsible for setting the direction for recent award-winning projects Kinect Sports 1 and Kinect Sports Season 2. She has worked on a wide variety of projects over the years including Conker’s Bad Fur Day, Viva Piñata, Banjo Kazooie and Kameo. She is currently working on a new and exciting project and feels very lucky to still be animating and doing what she loves after all these years.

Panel Chair

Barry O’Donoghue

Barry O’Donoghue is the founder of the award-winning animation studio Barley Films.


This JDIFF event has been organised in conjunction with Gareth Lee, Irish School of Animation at BCFE; Donald Taylor Black, National Film School at IADT; and the Irish Film Board.

This special event takes place on Saturday February 25th at 12:00pm at the Light House Cinema, Smithfield.

Tickets are available here


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