An animation that was originally funded by Watford Borough Council and broadcast in Watford town centre won a prestigious award at the London Short Film Festival at the weekend.
Watford-based film-makers Kim Noce and Shaun Clark originally created Homeward Bound – as it was provisionally titled – for the Digital Illuminations project in the council's successful Big Events series.
Homeward Bound was later developed into short film The Evening Her Mind Jumped Out of Her Head, which this weekend won the Encounters Award for Best Animated Short Film. The film was shown alongside a host of other animations that had hoped to win the accolade in a special event at the Institute for Contemporary Arts in Pall Mall, London, on Sunday.
Reacting to the news, Kim said: "We are delighted. It was a really nice surprise. It is a very lovely recognition for us, and for the whole team involved in this project."
Kim and Shaun had recruited Sarah Woolner, who previously won a BAFTA for her work on short animated film Sleeping with the Fishes, to write the original piece. Sarah took her inspiration from Watford's commuters, creating the story of a woman whose brain goes exploring when her train is forced to stop by a stray cow.
It took Shaun and Kim about five months to turn her work into a 10-minute animation. Actress Penelope McGhie – who previously played a Death Eater in parts one and two of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – provided the voices, and ‘moo’, for the animation.
Their creation was then projected onto the outside of Jackson Jewellers for four nights in a row in January last year. Since then, Kim and Shaun have taken The Evening Her Mind Jumped Out of Her Head to film festivals far and wide in countries including Brazil, France and Germany. Their London Short Film Festival victory is the latest of many successes for The Evening Her Mind Jumped Out of Her Head since its initial conception as Homeward Bound.
Elected Mayor of Watford Dorothy Thornhill said: "We're very proud to have supported the amazing work of Kim, Shaun and all their team. Watford really is great for the creative arts – we have three amazing theatres, the Leavesden Studios on the doorstep and regular filming at locations like the historic Cassiobury Park. Hopefully our town's current creative strength will continue into the future as the film-makers of tomorrow are inspired by the likes of Kim and Shaun."
Look out for more BIG Events from Watford Borough Council at www.watfordbigevents.co.uk.