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Animation Grad Closes Out 2012 with Two Film Awards

January 10, 2013

Animation Grad Closes Out 2012 with Two Film Awards

Jonathan Ng’s Requiem for Romance won two prestigious awards last month: best animated film at the Toronto International Reel Asian Film Festival, and the Canadian ShortWork prize at the Whistler Film Festival in B.C. Requiem for Romance was also screened at the Cannes Film Market’s Short Film Corner last year. The film will be screened in Toronto on Jan. 17 at the Carlton Cinema. Jonathan is a 2003 Classical Animation graduate.

Requiem for Romance centres on a modern-day couple’s secret love affair which comes to a bittersweet end during a cell phone call. But the visuals of the film reveal something entirely different: the epic re-imagining of their relationship set in feudal China. Premiered at the Montreal International Film Festival in August 2012, the film also was named a Young Director’s Forum Nominee at the Cristal Festival in Switzerland.

What is one of the most memorable moments of your time at Sheridan?
The first day of life drawing class in first year with Werner Zimmerman. We were eager to prove ourselves - anxious to show off our skills. Then Werner started us off drawing circles, no model, no lighting, no masterpieces. Just circles for the entire class. He told us no matter what level we were at, we were all going to start from the basics. He wanted us to put aside our egos and accept what he was going to teach us. From that point forward, I came to class like a sponge, ready to learn.

What is the biggest challenge in your career as an artist?
Challenges have changed throughout the years. Early on, when pursuing the independent animation filmmaking route, I think my biggest challenge was believing that it would be possible and sustainable. The odds were overwhelmingly against that type of career. Many people cautioned me against it, and yet I was compelled to pursue this route. As more and more of my film projects were funded and supported, and freelance work continued to fill in the gaps over the ensuing years, I developed a very strong belief in my choice. 

What are you working on now? 
I am currently in the very early stages of developing my own animated feature film, which will be based on the visual style of Requiem for Romance. I am working in partnership with an experienced producer whom I met in Cannes. Everything seems to be lining up to make it happen.

After graduating from Sheridan, Jonathan moved to Montreal where he completed his first professional film, Asthma Tech, at the National Film Board of Canada (NFB). After freelancing as a 3D pre-visualization animator on such feature films as The Spiderwick Chronicles and The Mummy 3, Jonathan further pursued his animation studies at Concordia University (2009). Still connected to Sheridan, he most recently spoke to animation students in late 2012.

Find out more about Requiem for Romance and Jonathan's other work

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