Ghent-based animation studio and producer Grid Animation has been elected European Animation Producer of the Year at Cartoon Forum, the Pan-European co-production and financing platform for animation programmes. French speaking Belgian broadcaster RTFB was also nominated in the category European Broadcaster of the Year, the award eventually went to Super RTL/ RTL Disney.
Both Jan Goossen and Mark Mertens of Grid were present to receive the award. The duo was pleasantly surprised by the choice of the jury within the category European Animation Producer of Year in which they had to compete with some well renowned companies within the industry. The other four nominees were 2 Minutes (a.o. 64 Zoo Lane, The Fridge) and Ellipsanime Productions (a.o. Taratabong), both from France, and Spider Eye (a.o. Jungle Junction, Moshi Monsters) and Tiger Aspect Productions (a.o. MisterBean, the Animated Series, Tinga Tanga Tales) from the United Kingdom.
Goossen stated in a first reaction: ‘We definitely owe this award to the grand enthusiasm of all our co-workers and to the trust granted to us by our partners, co-producers, broadcasters and distributors, and to the support of the Flanders Audiovisual Fund (VAF) and Screen Flanders.’ The award is a sign of recognition by the industry itself, as the winner is chosen by the more than 850 producers, buyers, distributors, financiers and funds that attend Cartoon Forum.
Grid was founded in 1995 as a postproduction company specialised in a.o. 3D, visual effects, character design, editing, etc. It provided its services to features such as The Misfortunates, Germaine and the American Ghost Rider; animation projects such as the Oscar-nominated The Triplets of Belleville and What's the Big Idea; and television series such as Cataract, Missing Persons Unit, Code 37, Salamander and In Flanders Fields. More recently the company, which opened a second office in Brussels, profiled itself as (co-)producer of prestigious animated features and series such as the new Astérix animated feature Astérix: The Mansion of the Gods, and as an animation studio with projects like Oops Noah is Gone and Wiplala. For the moment the company is also finalising the new game Knack, which will be launched together with new PlayStation 4 in December.
Grid presented two new projects at Cartoon Forum: Little Luke and Lucy, an animated series based on the ‘Junior Suske en Wiske’ children’s books and comics. Flemish co-producer is Tania Berkovitch for Santeboetiek. The other project is the animated series Klincus. Grid is also involved as co-producer in The Scrameustache of the Belgian At-Anim, which was also presented in Toulouse.