Three graduates from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) in Farnham are celebrating after being nominated for the 2015 Film BAFTAs.
Lilting director Hong Khaou, who graduated from BA (Hons) Film Production in 1997, was nominated for an Outstanding Debut By A British Writer, Director or Producer, whilst 2012 BA (Hons) Animation alumnus Marcus Armitage and foundation alumnus Chris Wilder received the nod in the British Short Animation category.
The awards ceremony, which will hosted by comedian and actor Stephen Fry, will take place on Sunday 8 February and be screened on BBC One.
Hong’s film, which stars Ben Whishaw (Skyfall, Cloud Atlas) and Cheng Pei Pei (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), was widely lauded by critics after opening the Sundance Film Festival in January, where it picked up the gong for Best Cinematography.
The film, which was nominated for three British Independent Film Awards (BIFA), was funded by Microwave, a scheme from Film London and BBC which challenges film-makers to shoot a feature film for no more than £120,000. Available on DVD and digital download, Lilting is a touching drama set in contemporary London which explores the relationship between a grieving mother and a stranger.
Meanwhile Marcus’ My Dad, which recently took home the Best British Film Award at the London International Animation Festival, is a hand-drawn animation examining inherited racism and its influences on a young child.
Marcus, who also collected Best British Film at the London International Animation Festival early in the year, said: "I am shocked but immensely proud and honoured to have been nominated for such a huge award. It is fantastic that a film about such a charged subject as inherited racism has been nominated and hopefully it can be brought to a larger audience who can see this subject from a new perspective."
The nominations mark an excellent start to the year for graduates of UCA’s School of Film and Media, following on from a successful 2014, in which the departments alumni picked up a range of awards, including two TV Craft BAFTAs.