Animation brings Extra Care residents to life

A touch of Hollywood glamour came to Alnwick this week, as a red carpet premiere was held for two new animated short films.

The idea was to use animation to celebrate the residents’ memories and, most importantly, for everyone to have a lot of fun making the films.

The red carpet premiere saw all the residents attending, along with friends, supporters, and the animation experts who made the films a reality.

With a ‘black tie’ dress code, the event saw everyone have their photograph taken on a red carpet as they enjoyed a glass of fizz, followed by a sumptuous three course dinner. A group of residents performed a song they had written themselves, accompanied by assistant manager Liz Pratt on the piano.

Then there was the serious business of the premiere, including a short documentary about making the films, and the presentation of ‘Oscars’ to all the amateur animators, along with certificates and a DVD featuring the films.

Scheme manager David Curran and assistant manager Liz Pratt ensured every single statuette was presented to the right person, at the first time of asking. La La Land was not nominated in any category.

The Alnwick animation, produced in collaboration with multimedia charity Twin Vision, uses the traditional Shrovetide football match to form a narrative, and even sees clay versions of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland getting involved.

The residents at Weavers’ Court, working alongside localism officer Lewis Rimington, have all learnt new skills in film and animation camera techniques, structuring visual narratives, model making and set design, as well as recording voice overs.

David said: “This has been a fantastic project to get involved in. It’s been a joy to see everyone’s creativity coming out, and we’ve laughed so much together.

“We really want to thank Paul and Leila from Twin Vision for the way they’ve dedicated themselves to making the project a success.”

Liz said: “We feel we’ve got such a lovely community here now. It’s been less than a year since we opened our doors, but everybody gets along so well, and everybody has something to contribute – the residents, staff, and friends we’ve got to know from the wider community.

“This animation project has been great fun from start to finish, and now we can make plans for more artistic endeavours!”

Eileen Adam, one of the local residents who visits Weavers’ Court regularly with husband Norman, said: “The premiere event was fantastic. Everyone enjoyed it. There is a great community spirit around Weavers’ Court, and we’re very grateful to David, Liz and their colleague Lewis for organising such imaginative events.”