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:: Spotlight :: Victorian filmmaker wins Academy Award nomination

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

The Film Victoria supported animation - The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello - has been nomination for an Academy Award in the Best Short Animation category. The film was directed and animated by Victorian, Anthony Lucas and produced by Susie Campbell and Julia Lucas. Mark Shirrefs wrote the script based on an original concept by Anthony Lucas.

The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello is set in a world of iron airships and steam powered computers. The gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator who flees his plague-ridden home - Gothia - on a desperate voyage to redeem himself. The distinctive animation style, providing a silhouette appearance to its characters, establishes the unique world of Jasper and his explorations. Joel Edgerton voiced the character of Jasper Morello.

Sandra Sdraulig, CEO of Film Victoria said, “We are delighted to be involved with a film that has such a strong story and innovative animation style. Anthony Lucas is an extremely talented animator, and the combination of Mark Shirrefs’ script, Bruce Rowland’s composition and David Tait’s editing, has produced a truly wonderful Australian film. Film Victoria congratulates Anthony and the team on their hard work, and we wish the project every success at the Academy Awards in March.”

Over the last year, The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello has been selected for over 40 film festivals and competitions internationally and won several awards including:
- Best Short Animation and Outstanding Achievement in Craft in a Non-Feature Awards at the Australian Film Institute Awards 2005.
- Cristal d’Annecy at the 2005 International Animated Film Festival, Annecy France
- Best Animation Award at the 2005 IF Awards
- Best Animated Short Film at the Worldwide Short Film Festival, Toronto Canada
- The 2005 Yoram Gross Best Animation Award at the Dendy Awards for Australian Short Film, Sydney.

The film is also currently nominated for a British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Award for Best Short Animation, which will be announced on Sunday, February 19 (Monday, February 20 AEST).
The Academy Awards is one of the most prestigious award events on the international film calendar and will be announced on Sunday, March 5 in the USA (commencing 12 midday Monday, March 6 AEST).

The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello was produced through the Melbourne based company 3-D Films with production funding from Film Victoria. The project also received production finance from the Australian Film Commission and SBS and is distributed by Madman Entertainment. To watch the trailer visit here

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