Celebrated Cape Town animation house Triggerfish’s endearing animation Belly Flop is now on YouTube for you and your children to watch for free.
Regarded as Africa’s best animation of the year, it was screened at more than 60 international festivals and won seven awards, including the Africa Movie Academy Award for best African animation. It was also selected for three Oscar-qualifying festivals.
The animation is less than five minutes long and sees a little girl called Penny go to a public swimming pool, where she sees a svelte blonde do spectacular swan dives. Unperturbed, Penny does her own dives off the board, belly-flopping each time. At first, everyone is amused, but then Penny does a belly flop that saves the day.
The short was director Jeremy Collins’ passion project and was created during down time at the studio by Collins and co-director Kelly Dillon over the past seven years.
“The character of Penny was inspired by a girl I au paired for when I was at university,” says Dillon.
“I remember when she started taking swimming lessons – I admired her persistence in learning to dive properly, oblivious that she kept belly-flopping.
“This short film has taken seven years to make, so being named Africa’s best animation really reinforces Belly Flop’s message that perseverance does pay off, eventually.”
Belly Flop is the latest success from Triggerfish, which helped animate Revolting Rhymes, Magic Light Picture’s BBC One Christmas special adaptation of the Roald Dahl classic, which was nominated for an Oscar and won at the Annie Awards, Kidscreen Awards and the International Emmy Awards this year. Triggerfish is now in production on its third feature film, Seal Team.
“The process of making Belly Flop has been a lot like Penny’s day at the pool – a combination of perseverance, hard work and plain good luck,” says Collins.