Biographies Archive - Fredrikstad Animation Festival

Søren Fleng

Søren Fleng is an animation producer and executive with 20+ years of experience and he’s the Head of the board of The Danish Animation Society.
He lives and works in Viborg and has his office at Arsenalet where his company Happy Flyfish Rights ApS is based.
His producer credits include the 4 billion view Angry Birds Toons series, the Ella Bella Bingo TV-serie, Olsen Gang gets Polished and more. Besides regular entertainment, Søren works with functional animation, using animation as an effective communication tool.

Chris Ebeling

Driven by crafting unique visual experiences for Film, TV, Games, and emerging technologies, Chris Ebeling is a world-class animator, creative director, writer, and digital artist having worked on Hollywood blockbusters such as The Lego Movie’s, The Great Gatsby, Gods of Egypt and Happy feet 2. Supplementing his extensive film and VFX background, Chris has successfully directed projects in the real-time space, with experience across games as well as virtual and augmented reality projects. Chris has since moved on to co-found his own digital creative studio, Virtually Human. Here, the core is to keep people, of all ages, emotionally engaged through immersive digital entertainment. Exploring emerging technologies in gaming, data, and mixed reality. With a strong focus to constantly innovate by bridging the gap between the real world and the virtual world, where the two become inseparable. With his extensive experience in games and CG film development coupled with his passion for Virtual and Mixed Reality, Chris’s goal is to help define the visual language and capabilities of these emerging technologies, contributing to understanding and full potential of these interactive media platforms.

Andreas E. Lund

Andreas Emil Lund is a trained illustrator from the Vocational School Kristiania. He discovered animation during his education when he wanted several mediums and techniques for storytelling. As a self-taught animator, Andreas has developed a unique animation style that does not necessarily follow general animation principles. The animations Andreas creates have served as a method for developing a distinctive style as an illustrator and designer, which really engages and at times provokes. It’s far from Oscar material, but an experience quite out of the ordinary, and has been nominated and won awards, both at home and abroad.

Death By Unga Bunga

Death By Unga Bunga is on a roll these days. They played 2020’s coolest streamed concert with Once Upon A Time In Deadwood City, have launched their own beer and interrupted the Taco Friday with their appearance on national television. They recently released their sixth masterpiece, the album “Heavy Male Insecurity”. In addition to fierce praise in the domestic media, the album has also been praised by heavyweights such as NPR, AllMusic, Classic Rock Magazine, among others. Death By Unga Bunga played garage rock while the other kids played so-called indie, and they announced the transition to arena rock when garage and psych became trendy. In other words, the guys know everything about being outsiders or trendsetters. As they forge their own path off the mainstream, the band constantly perfects the art of writing irresistible anthems about not fitting in, male insecurity, and partying.

Paloma Baeza

Paloma Baeza draws on her acting and screenwriting background to develop captivating storylines starring furry puppets and subtle humour, while also collaborating with household names including Cillian Murphy and Helena Bonham Carter. As a graduate of the National Film and Television School, Paloma developed her stop-motion and puppetry skills, with her animated short film Poles Apart earning an Annie and a BAFTA. Named as one of the Variety Animators to Watch, Paloma was also credited with helming Alex Garland’s animation and live-action hybrid movie The Toymaker’s Secret for Sony Tristar and bringing the life and work of iconic Mexican artist Frida Kahlo to life in a new animated film currently in development with Universal Content Group.

Emma de Swaef & Marc James Roels

Marc and Emma are a filmmaking couple based in Ghent, Belgium. While Marc’s background lies in live-action, Emma loves anything to do with the handcrafted, building highly tactile and characterful puppets, miniatures, and detailed sets. Their work mixes stop-motion and puppeteering artfully with live-action which creates a particular kind of absurd humour and tenderness that has earned them international critical acclaim.
The duo created the multi-award-winning anthology film This Magnificent Cake! which was endorsed by Oscar-winning director Barry Jenkins as his favourite film of the year and cemented the pair’s position as one of the leading voices in contemporary stop-motion. They are currently directing a story for the eagerly anticipated Netflix and Nexus Studios stop-motion series The House.
Their stop-motion short Oh Willy… has won over 80 awards worldwide, including the coveted Cartoon d’Or. Their animation work on the “Sugarman” commercial for Belgian sugar manufacturer Tiense Suiker was awarded a Bronze Craft Lion for Animation, and their “Stress Doll” ad for the Belgium public transport company De Lijn won an Effie award for effectiveness, as well as being voted the most popular Belgian ad of the year.

Matthew Luhn

Matthew Luhn is a director, writer, and story consultant with over 25 years of experience creating stories and characters at Pixar Animation Studios, The Simpsons, and beyond. His story credits include Toy Story, Toy Story 2, Toy Story 3, Monsters Inc., Monsters University, Finding Nemo, UP, Cars, and Ratatouille. Alongside his story work in Hollywood, Matthew also trains companies, organisations, and other professionals on how to craft and tell stories.

Serge Mostowy

Professor Serge Mostowy is a Lister Institute of Preventive Medicine, Wellcome Beit and Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow. He studied physics (B.Sc.), evolution (M.Sc.), and microbiology and immunology (Ph.D.) at McGill University, Canada. After postdoctoral work on the cell biology of infection at Institut Pasteur in France, he moved to Imperial College London in 2012 to start a Wellcome Trust Research Career Development Fellowship. In 2018 Serge was appointed professor of cellular microbiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, where his lab investigates novel roles for the cytoskeleton in innate immunity. The Mostowy lab has also developed the zebrafish as an important model to study the cell biology of infection and the therapeutic potential of targeting the cytoskeleton in vivo.

Don Hahn

Don Hahn began working on Pete’s Dragon for Disney in 1976. He worked as an associate producer on Who Framed Roger Rabbit and later produced Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Atlantis: The Lost Empire. In 2017 Hahn executive produced the live-action feature Beauty and the Beast. Don Hahn has also directed and produced several documentaries about animation, such as Waking Sleeping Beauty, Richard M. Sherman: Songs of a Lifetime, and Howard. He has also written several books about animation including, The Alchemy of Animation, Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men, Before Ever After, Animation Magic and more.

Ellie Land

Ellie Land is a British animation director, researcher and senior lecturer. Her award-winning animated documentary films screen internationally at film festivals and exhibitions. Recently, her work on the feature film Irene’s Ghost was nominated for a BIFA Award in 2018 and was cited as one of the best films of 2019 by the Guardian. Her work on the short-animated documentary Bathroom Privileges for the BFI won the AHRC Research in Film (Animation) Award 2020. She is currently working on a pilot 360 documentary project called Menopause Realities with ForwardSlash Films. Ellie is programme leader of animation B.A. at Northumbria University. She is the co-convener of the animation practice as research symposium and special interest group for the Society for Animation Studies and on the editorial board for the “Animation Practice, Process and Production” journal. She is the co-founder of AnimatedDocumentary.com.

August Volden Skara

August Volden Skara is a stop motion animator and short film maker from Nesodden in Norway. He graduated with a B.A. from Volda University College in 2019 with his bachelor film A meeting between Munch and Ibsen, a stop motion film made for VR. August is interested in traditional stop motion animation, but also stop motion animation for VR and for game development.

Celia Kaspar

Celia Kaspar is a freelance character designer and illustrator based in Bielefeld, Germany. Since 2015 she has worked on a variety of projects across the industry, gaining experience in character development for mobile games, children’s books, and animation projects for both TV and feature films. She has worked for studios like Brown Bag Films and Boulder Media, where she was one of the lead character designers for the new My Little Pony : A New Generation (2021). Also, she has taught traditional drawing animation and character design for several years, running workshops and courses in schools.

Anna Malin Mantzaris

Anna is a multi-award-winning Swedish animation director. She loves to work with different textures and materials to give her work a handmade feel. She often works with humour and imperfect characters. Her short films have won over 60 international awards, including European Animation Award, Vimeo Best of the Year, Walt Disney Award, and Audience Award at Ottawa International Animation Festival. Anna has an M.A. in animation from the Royal College of Art and recently worked on Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs. She is also occasionally teaching and has been a guest lecturer at Royal College of Art, Stockholm University of the Arts, Design College of Barcelona, and Hyper Island among others.

Samantha Moore

Samantha Moore is a UK-based, international award-winning animation director. She loves the joyfulness and eclectic nature of animation. No one ever finds animation intimidating, and yet it can convey complex ideas to a wide audience in an engaging way. Sam has worked on diverse subjects, from competitive sweet-pea growing, to cutting edge microbiology, archaeology, neuroscience, and her own experience of having twins. Sam is currently working on a short animated magical realist fairy tale about dysentery, A Language of Shapes (2022) funded by a Wellcome Trust award and made in collaboration with the Mostowy microbiology lab at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Sam teaches part-time, as an Associate Professor in animation at University College Volda (Norway) as well as Senior Tutor (Research) in animation at the Royal College of Art (UK).

Philip Lazebnik

Philip LaZebnik has written numerous television episodes and motion picture screenplays in Los Angeles and Europe. His screenwriting credits include Disney’s Pocahontas and Mulan, and DreamWorks’ The Prince of Egypt and The Legend of El Dorado. He was also a writer for several television series, including Wings, Star Trek: the Next Generation, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Mr. LaZebnik now lives in Denmark, where he has written numerous movies and television shows throughout Europe and the U.S. Most recently he wrote the book for the musical theatrical version of The Prince of Egypt with songs by Stephen Schwartz, which is currently playing in London’s West End at the Dominion Theatre.

Claus Toksvig Kjaer

Claus Toksvig Kjaer is a Danish animation producer. He studied English literature at Aarhus University but changed course and went on to pursue classical drawing and animation at The Animation Workshop, Viborg. After graduation, he worked on a number of short films before joining Cartoon Saloon in Kilkenny, Ireland in 2006 as production coordinator on their BBC Television Show Skunk Fu. He returned to Denmark in 2009 and began leading a series of animated science projects. In order to attract international co-productions to the region, he was hired by Arsenalet as a producer of their association in October 2011. Focusing primarily on feature film production, he partnered up with Nørlum Animation Studio in 2013 co-producing such films as the Oscar-nominated Song of the Sea for Cartoon Saloon and Long Way North for Sacrebleu and Maybe Movies. The chance came for another collaboration with Cartoon Saloon in 2015, a 22 minute pilot for Amazon Prime Eddie of the Realms Eternal and again in 2017 with Disney TV Animation on the first Season of Big Hero 6 – The Series.

Hilde K. Kjøs

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Hilde K. Kjøs is an award-winning documentary director and cinematographer, originally trained as a photographer at Manchester Metropolitan University in England. Kjøs co-established Mica Film AS in 2004 and has since been based in Oslo, directing and producing documentaries for international film festivals and television. Since 2019 she has worked in VR, developing experiences based on real life events.

Bjørn-Morten Nerland

Bjørn-Morten Nerland is a XR producer living in Oslo. He has worked for over 10 years with immersive media and interactive productions, from exhibitions, documentaries and commercials to music videos and short films. He is a co-founder of Stargate Media. Bjørn-Morten received his B.A. in media technology from Lillehammer University College. He has been nominated for the Norwegian “Gullruten” award for several years in a row, including in the category “Innovation of the Year”. He has also received a Webby Award for Best Use of Interactive Video.

Lasse Persson

Lasse Persson is an animator, director, and film producer. He trained in animation in Canada, where he also worked as an animator on film projects led by Oscar-winning filmmakers Derek Lamb and Kaj Pindal. Since 1995 he has run the independent production company Swedish Ecstasy Film. Lasse has created many acclaimed short films that have won awards at film festivals around the world and have been shown on TV channels such as American MTV, French ARTE, and British Channel Four. Persson’s appearance is sometimes male and sometimes female. As a female, she is called Lisa Tulin. A recurrent theme in Persson’s films is gender issues, and in 2013, Lasse/Lisa received the Premio Maguey Award “for your path as a Cult Movie Director” at the Guadalajara Film Festival, Mexico. Lasse’s latest films are Corona on the fridge, Art on the fridge and Blood on the fridge. The three films are based on preschool children’s drawings. For the time being, he is working on a new film called Scared of Death.

Kaisa Penttilä

Kaisa Penttilä (b. 1975) is an animation artist, born in Helsinki where she still lives and works. In the 1990s she studied animation in Turku and has worked as an animation freelancer since. She has directed multiple short films that have toured film festivals around the world and won numerous prizes. Her biggest single project is the 26-episode children’s TV-series Boris the Råt Mends his Ways. Kaisa Penttilä wrote and directed it together with Leena Jääskeläinen and it is being broadcasted on YLE at the moment. Kaisa Penttilä has also been a lecturer in many schools and projects, such as Aalto University since 2013 and a media education programme for women in Somaliland in 2013.Currently, she is working on a feature animation, Bear Park.

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