IVOR WOOD: A CELEBRATION AT THE BFI – A REVIEW

Last Sunday myself, Joseph Wallace and Ivor’s son Sean had the pleasure of celebrating Ivor Wood’s work at the BFI Southbank. Huge thanks to everyone that came down and it was great to meet some people who followed the blog. It was great to meet people like Kevin who I’d spoken to in the comments and put faces to names.

Ivor Wood: A Celebration - BFI Southbank

Ivor Wood: A Celebration – BFI Southbank

The whole event was really well organised and compered by Justin Johnson. Unlike the Manchester event last year we included episodes of Ivor’s work inbetween the talk. We were first joined on screen by The Herbs, The Wombles, Paddington and Postman Pat before Joseph got up and gave us all a run through of Ivor’s career. In 10 quick minutes he managed to detail Ivor’s beginnings at La Comete and the Magic Roundabout through to his time at FilmFair then onto his own studio Woodland Animations. As he rounded up we were treated to episodes from Gran, Bertha and Charlie Chalk before we all took to the stage for a Q&A.

Ivor Wood: A Celebration - BFI Southbank

Ivor Wood: A Celebration – BFI Southbank

Compered by Justin we talked about what Ivor meant to us as fans and Sean gave some really great detail in what it was like growing up with an animation studio beneath his house. As he explained it was very much the norm and when asked what his dad did for a living he would reply “he plays with dolls”. Sean went onto explain the very different personalities that Ivor had, one being very shy, especially in the limelight but mostly a very eccentric and creative man.

Sadly we weren’t able to film this event as before but we do have the moment a very special guest joined us on stage thanks to my wife. What talk on Ivor Wood would be complete without an appearance from one of his best loved creations…Parsley. Carried all the way from his home in South London by Sean he was revealed to the audience to great applause. This then sparked a great conversation piece where we discuss how the puppet moves and how parts of the sets were made. You can watch it below:

 

Thanks again to all that came and for those that didn’t we’ll hopefully see you at another event, as I’m sure they’ll be more! I’ll be back to the blog next time so keep those peepers peeled. 

Ivor Wood: A Celebration at the BFI

Hello Ivor Wood fans, I have some exciting news! On Sunday 26th August at 1pm there will be a celebration of Ivor Wood’s work and career at the BFI Southbank, London!

Ivor Wood: A Celebration - BFI Southbank 26th August 2018

Ivor Wood: A Celebration – BFI Southbank 26th August 2018

Hosted by the BFI the panel will include Ivor Wood expert Joseph Wallace, Ivor’s son Sean and myself. We’ll be talking all about Ivor’s work and long lasting career in stop-motion animation. Everything will be covered from his days at La Comete in Paris working on the Magic Roundabout all the way through to Woodland Animations and some sneak peaks at some ideas that never quite saw the light of day.

If you missed the great talk we all did at Manchester Animation Festival last November then make sure you grab a ticket for this at https://whatson.bfi.org.uk. There are still some left so we hope to see some of you there

The talk will be a part of the BFI’s animation season, which covers a plethora of animation events, screenings and talks. August is all about Children’s TV and boy do the Brits to it well. Here’s a bit from the BFI about what they are looking to achieve:

Not Just For Adults (August)

“He has bequeathed us a rich legacy of programmes that will continue to be shown for many years to come, all bearing his unique touch”
Michael Bond on Ivor Wood

The UK is envied across the world for its high-quality animated TV shows – Justin Johnson and Jez Stewart present a month of children’s animation.

Much of our focus so far has concentrated on work made by independent pioneers or experimental artists, so this month we look at an area more commonly associated with quality British animation: animation for children, and in particular for TV. As well as having a nostalgia moment as we revisit the great work of stop-motion director Ivor Wood – who produced many beloved shows such as Postman Pat and The Magic Roundabout – we also look at the companies who have taken Wood’s baton to ensure a new generation are well served. Karrot Animation, Blue Zoo and Studio AKA are just three of many UK animation studios thriving in this area.

Justin Johnson and Jez Stewart

It’s going to be a fantastic event to be a part of and really nice to celebrate Ivor’s career in the city he called home. It’ll also be great to have Ivor’s son Sean on the panel ready to give an insight into his fathers life and what it was like to live with a sometimes quite eccentric creator.

Hope to see you all there and if you do pop down then come say hi!