Oscar nomination includes Latvians

French director Sylvain Chomet’s “The Triplets of Belleville,” one of three Academy Award nominees for best animated film, has a Latvian connection, Latvian state television reports.

The Latvian company Rija Films was one of four animation studios that worked on the movie, doing what is known as “tweening” between distinct images.

Formed in 1995, Rija Films has been involved in a number of well-known local projects, including the 1990 animation and CD-ROM “Velniņi” (Little Devils) and the 2001 animation “Vai Rīga jau gatava?” (The National Hero), according to the Web site of the National Film Centre. The studio is run by Vilnis Kalnaellis.

Rija Films was chosen for the work because of budgetary reasons, “Triplets” Art Director Evgeni Tomov said in an interview with AnimWatch, an online journal.

“The Triplets of Belleville” was released last year by Sony Pictures Classics. The 80-minute film is competing for the Oscar against “Brother Bear” and the Disney blockbuster “Finding Nemo”

The Oscar nominations were announced Jan. 27 in Los Angeles by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Winners of the Academy Awards will be revealed during a live televized ceremony Feb. 29.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *