October 27, 2021
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Kilkenny’s hurling success adds a bit of spice to local studio’s search for first Oscar

Kilkenny’s sucesss in bagging All-Ireland hurling titles has added an extra bit of pressure on the internationally-renowned animation studio Cartoon Saloon to finally land an Oscar.

Speaking after Cartoon Saloon’s latest critically acclaimed feature Wolfwalkers became the local studio’s latest Oscar nomination, director Ross Stewart said: “Kilkenny has won a lot of All-Irelands and is really good at hurling. Every time we get a nomination they keep on going ‘Ah, this time you’ll win it lads.”

Ross admitted it was “a bit of a relief” when this year’s Academy Award nominations were finally announced.

He told RTÉ Entertainment: “There were so many people who had fingers crossed for us, so it’s a relief now that we have the nomination.”

Ross said the Cartoon Saloon team are extremely appreciative for all of the support and well-wishes they have received.

“That’s one of the great things about Ireland, if someone is doing great in a sport or in the arts, the whole nation gets behind them and cheers them on. It’s really great,” he added.

Wolfwalkers tells the story of a young apprentice hunter and her father as they journey to Ireland to help wipe out the last wolf pack. But everything changes when she befriends a free-spirited girl from a mysterious tribe rumoured to transform into wolves by night.

Tomm Moore, who also directed the film, said it is “lovely” to be recognised.

“It’s lovely. For the third one in the trilogy that we’ve been working on to be recognised, it’s just great. I know there is stiff competition out there but we’ll give it a lash,” he told RTÉ.

Wolfwalkers is up against OnwardOver the MoonA Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon and Soul.

It was made by Kilkenny’s Cartoon Saloon and Luxembourg’s Melusine Productions. Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland, the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) and RTÉ also participated in its production.

Meanwhile,the odds on Wolfwalkers scooping an Oscar have plummeted since its nomination was announced.

Irish punters are now showing their support to see it go all the way at the ceremony next month by backing it into 3/1 from 10/1.

Disney Pixar’s Soul is the hot favourite at 1/6, as well as Onward (8/1), Over the Moon and A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon (both 16/1), according to the bookmaker BoyleSports.

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