The winners of the 2012 HeadsUp Movie Awards were announced today with Tullow Theatre Group from Co. Carlow scooping the title in the Under 18s category and Laura Gaynor from Strandhill in Co. Sligo triumphing in the Over 18s category. The winners of the annual awards were announced live on RTÉ Two's Two Tube following an online public vote of shortlisted entries. The winners' prizes included a specially-commissioned trophy, 1,000 in prize money as well as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shadow a leading filmmaker or animator for a day.
The annual HeadsUp Movie Awards in association with RTÉ Two's Two Tube aim to encourage young people to create film or animation clips that promote positive mental health and encourage them to discuss their feelings about mental health. Entries, which came in from all over the country, were shortlisted by a panel of judges which included Emmy award-winning film director Dearbhla Walsh and leading animator with Oscar-nominated Brown Bag Films Nicky Phelan before being put to public vote online.
Tullow Theatre Group's film focuses on young people in different everyday situations who are dealing with mental health issues. The group uses balloons to symbolise the issues that young people carry around with them. The message of letting go of their problems instead of holding onto them is evident in the final scene where the participants release balloons in a visual demonstration of encouragement to those in need of support to talk about their problems.
Laura Gaynor's entry has elements of both live action and animation and follows the sequence of a piece of paper unfolding as it reveals different feelings young people experience and then offers advice on where they can find support. The engaging and thought-provoking animation is intended to make a serious subject matter accessible to the young people that it is aimed at.
Collette Ryan, project manager with HeadsUp, commented on the quality of entries this year: "I'd like to congratulate the winners on their great films and animations which were very powerful and had very positive mental health messages. They really showed an understanding of the mental health issues that many young people face today. Importantly they showed that no-one is alone and by reaching out they can get the support they need. These awards give young people the chance to tell us all what's going on in their lives including any mental health issues that they are experiencing."
SinÉad Kennedy, Presenter, RTÉ's Two Tube added "We'd like to congratulate Tullow Theatre Group and Laura Gaynor on their awards - their talent for filming-making and animation really impressed our audience. The theme of the awards was 'Let it Out' and they were able to get that message across so simply and effectively. We were delighted to be involved with the HeadsUp Movie Awards again this year as it's a fantastic opportunity for our audience of young people to raise awareness about an issue that they and their peers face every day."
Thank you to everyone who entered this year's competition and put so much time and thought into their entry. These entries will be highlighted by HeadsUp throughout the year.
To view the winning films please see the following links
Under 18s category winner :
18-24 Year Category: