Aardman: The Bristol connection

Presence, S. and Spicer, A. H. (2017) Aardman: The Bristol connection. In: Honess Roe, B., ed. (2017) Aardman. London: Routledge. [Submitted] Available from: http://eprints.uwe.ac.uk/27854

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Publisher's URL: https://www.routledge.com/


Aardman is a company with a global brand image and collaborates with major international organisations – Sony Pictures, StudioCanal, the BBC and Channel 4 – yet it is also a regional company whose roots are firmly in Bristol and the south-west region. This chapter would explore Aardman’s history as a Bristol-based company, analyse the reasons for its being situated there and why the company remains in that city. In doing so, it would investigate the burgeoning media industries of the Bristol region, examining the networks and interconnections that support them and the reasons why this area has enjoyed sustained media growth and assumed increasing importance in the UK media industries as a whole. There is a very particular media ecology in Bristol that the article would describe and analyse (for the first time) including scrutinising Aardman’s position as the dominant player and thus its central importance to that ecology. It will look at all aspects of Aardman’s portfolio, exploring the relationships between the different divisions. The authors are well placed to write this chapter. Both are involved in a three-year European research project, Success in the Film and Television Industries (SiFTI), that has pioneered methodologies for analysing and comparing small/medium film and television companies that are both commercially and critically successful. They also both live in Bristol and are currently engaged on a project that is analysing and mapping Bristol’s media industries which includes detailed consideration of Aardman. The University of the West of England has close connections with Aardman and is currently developing a formal partnership. Spicer has previously interviewed David Sproxton (in 2011) and is a personal friend of Mark Burton, the writer-director of the Shaun the Sheep the company’s latest feature film that is currently on release. He is confident therefore that they will be able to base part of the chapter on exclusive interviews.

Item Type:Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords:Aardman, Bristol, film, television, animation
Faculty/Department:Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries and Education > School of Art and Design
ID Code:27854
Deposited By: Dr S. Presence
Deposited On:18 Jan 2016 08:39
Last Modified:04 Feb 2016 12:19

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