AFI FEST WINNERS: ‘Belly,’ ‘Oh Willy’ receive animation honors

JULIA POTT graduated from London’s Royal College of Art just last year, making the film “Belly” while pursuing her master’s in animation.

On Thursday, that student film won the Special Jury Award for Animation at the AFI Fest in Los Angeles.

That’s major recognition for the Brooklyn-based artist, who says she “employs awkward animated characters to act out her inner confusions.”

The AFI jury praised “Belly” for “its personal touch to technique and playful storytelling that is a welcome addition to the pantheon of animation.”

Comic Riffs echoes the praise. You can see the film for yourself here:

“BELLY”:

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The festival also honored Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels’s film ”Oh Willy,” which received the Grand Jury Award for Animated Short.

The judges lauded the warm stop-motion film — featuring characters made from textile — for “melding a dynamic narrative with innovative animation style that leads the viewer to pure wonderment.”

De Swaef, who studied animation in Belgium, has said spent a year on the film (from Beast Animation, Polaris Film Production & Finance, Vivement Lundi!, il Luster Films) — completing it this past January.

Here’s the trailer:

“OH WILLY”:

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To read about all the AFI winners Thursday, you can CLICK HERE.

Writer/artist/visual storyteller Michael Cavna is creator of the "Comic Riffs" column and graphic-novel reviewer for The Post's Book World. He relishes sharp-eyed satire in most any form.

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