Edinboro students earn fourth place in global animation contest


Animation 2021

A team of Edinboro University animation students finished in the global top five in the competitive national 24 HOURS Animation contest, hosted by world-renowned professional animation specialists.

Leah DeJohn, Abigail Frisch, Beau Henry, TK Kratz and Luke Shay, known as The Miraculous 112 – which created “The New Normal” from the official prompt – finished their submission in a record-breaking time of 12 hours, which was No. 1 in the entire U.S. The team placed fourth overall out of 208 teams that participated in the 19th year of the contest.

Edinboro University sent six teams to the annual competition for 2021.

“They all did great work and we are very proud of all of them,” said Brad Pattullo, professor of art, animation and filmmaking at Edinboro. “We are blown away by the winning team's accomplishment. These students are at the top of their class and are very talented, motivated and hardworking. They have a bright future ahead of them.”

The 24 HOURS Animation Contest, which was originally created to help animation students work collectively with accurate speed, meet deadlines and make creative decisions under pressure, now features more than 1,500 students from 71 schools and 11 countries.

“The Bidoofers,” a film from Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado in Brazil, took the top spot in the contest with 256 points. “InkPink” from Belas Artes University in Brazil finished second with 240 points. Seneca College in Toronto finished third with “Big Jug Juggalos,” while Capilano University in Vancouver rounded out the top five with “Prumboltar” and 233 points.

Teams of five animation students competed for 24 hours – between Oct. 15-16 – to design, animate and publish their 30-second video. Prizes were awarded to the top seven winning teams by a panel of industry professionals, including Alison Mann, co-president of Fourth Wall Animation; Ira Owens, cinematographer for Sucker Punch Productions; Alan Huynh, director/story artist for Netflix; Grace Babineau, background painter/color designer for Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network; Angela Abeyti, character/prop designer for Nickelodeon; Nathan Palm, artist/character designer for DreamWorks; and Ryan Stapleton, storyboard artist for 20th Century Fox Animation.

As a result of their finish, the Edinboro team earned a prize valued at $12,470, which includes $1,000 cash ($200 to each student), five premium passes to the CTN Animation Expo in California – one of the largest animation conventions in the U.S., five masterclass seats with Disney animator John Pomeroy, a 1-hour session with Walt Disney Animation Recruitment and Talent Development and prizes from Toon Boom, Sony Pictures, Animation Magazine and DreamWorks.

The annual contest is free to participants and is funded by industry sponsorships. Past sponsors have included Bento Box, Toon Boom, Animation Magazine, Stuart NG Books, Netflix Animation, DreamWorks, Nickelodeon, Disney, Pixar, Sony Pictures Animation and others.

“Although this contest sounds crazy — it is a rapid speed lesson in animation production,” said Aubry Mintz, festival organizer and animation professor at Chapman University. The top films are as good as completed student films that take over a year to produce. It’s a chance to set personal goals and work outside of a classroom structure.”

For information on the 24 HOURS Animation Contest, visit the official 24 HOURS Animation Contest Facebook page.

Photo: Edinboro University’s Miraculous 12 – Abigail Frisch, Beau Henry, Leah DeJohn, TK Kratz and Luke Shay – earned fourth place in the global 24 HOURS Animation contest this month.