Irish animator wins top global award as Irish animation studios make global industry pitch

The leading lights of the Irish animation industry have descended on Cannes in southern France this weekend to represent Ireland and pitch for international business at the ‘MIPJunior’ conference. The two-day event is an annual gathering of 1,600 of the world’s most important buyers, commissioners, producers, development executives and distributors from the global children’s television industry.

There was a special moment for Irish animators yesterday (Saturday 12th October) as Brown Bag Films’ Bronagh O’Hanlon was honoured with the prestigious Kids Trendsetter Award, beating off global competition in the process. Bronagh is the director and series creator of the hugely successful animated series Sadie Sparks, which saw outstanding global success this year.

The Irish delegation is led by Animation Ireland, the representative body of Irish animation studios, and will feature fifteen Irish studios aiming to secure deals with global powerhouses such as Disney, Netflix, Amazon and Nickelodeon. Enterprise Ireland is also sending a team of executives to the event, with animation now representing a significant and growing share of Irish exports.

Among the Irish companies hoping to secure major international deals is Distillery Films, a newly-launched prodco from producer Jonathan Clarke. Commenting at the event, Jonathan said; ‘we founded Distillery to tap into the ongoing strength of the Irish animation industry. We specialise in developing original projects for global audiences, and we’re here to pitch Sullivan Sails, an original 2D animated series for 4-6 year olds based around a love of adventure and exploration.’

Commenting on the success of Irish animation at the event was Animation Ireland Chairperson Moe Honan; ’looking at the number of Irish studios here and the success they are having really highlights that Ireland is one of the best locations in the world for animation production. The animation sector is now a major contributor to the Irish economy and there huge potential for further growth. The talent and expertise in Ireland is breath-taking and it is important that we continue to encourage the animation sector to grow and flourish, creating jobs and contributing to the wider economy.’’

Among the Irish animation studios at MIPJunior this week are 9 Story Media’s Brown Bag Films, Cartoon Saloon, Distillery Films, elk.Studios, Geronimo, Giant Animation, JAM Media, Kavaleer, Lighthouse Studios, Monster Ent, Pictor, Telegael. MIPJunior is focused on children’s programming and is part of the global media and entertainment event MIPCOM which is held from 14th-17th October.

Animation Ireland is the trade association for Ireland’s animation studios, representing 28 member studios who employ more than 1,700 people nationwide. The sector has seen meteoric growth in recent years, with the sector now generating over €120 million for the economy annually as Irish animation projects are viewed in over 180 countries worldwide.


Please Note: Moe Honan is available for interview

Editor’s Notes: 

For more information about MIPJunior, please visit 

For more information about Animation Ireland, please visit 

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Paul Allen or Rory Sweeney             

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