Magazine article Screen International

Liz Murdoch, Double Negative Back New UK Animation Studio

Magazine article Screen International

Liz Murdoch, Double Negative Back New UK Animation Studio

Article excerpt

Former Aardman Features exec Sarah Smith, has launched a UK animation studio with backing from Elisabeth Murdoch and Double Negative.

Sarah Smith, the award-winning producer, writer and director of Arthur Christmas and a former Creative Director at Aardman Features, has set up new animated film company Locksmith Animation in the UK.

It claims to be the first dedicated high-end feature animation studio ever created in the UK, and is focussed on creating a slate of CG animated films for the global marketplace.

Locksmith is backed as principle shareholder by Elisabeth Murdoch while leading UK visual effects house Double Negative are also investors. Double Negative will work closely with Locksmith as they build an animation pipeline in which Locksmith plans to make its films.

The company's plans also feature an international creative board of animation writers, directors and digital experts, to be announced shortly.

Smith said: "With animated films among the most beloved and successful movies in the world but still only a handful of producers out there, the UK offers Locksmith a unique opportunity, including a world class CG Visual FX industry, brilliant comedy writers & directors, outstanding children's literature, the European animation talent pool, and government tax credits.

"We're very excited that having attracted a visionary investor with global business skills in the shape of Liz Murdoch, and a globally acclaimed production partner in Double Negative, we have everything to make the most ambitious version of our vision achievable. …

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