Bournemouth played host to visual effects, animation and gaming experts from around the world as Bournemouth University hosted the BFX Festival.

The Festival, held in-person and online, brought together university students and industry experts from Bournemouth and around the world for a week of talks, showcases and workshops, as well as a recruitment fair for students to talk to experts about their future careers.

Highlights from the Festival included Oscar-nominees and BU graduates Anders Langlands who kicked off the speaker programme with the talk about visual effects of Disney’s Mulan, and Ben Jones, who spoke about his work on the film The One and Only Ivan, offering advice to students looking to follow in his footsteps.

The creative team behind Ron’s Gone Wrong – Locksmith Animation – sent their Director, Editor and Head of Story to talk about their first feature film and how it was made.

Speaking at the Festival, BFX Festival Director Oleg Fryazinov said, “The Festival is a wonderful showcase of some of the best visual effects and animation from the last 12 months, and it is a fascinating insight for the students to see how their favourite games and movies are made, we hope this inspires them into long and successful careers in the industry.”

Reflecting on his time at Bournemouth University, Ben Jones, VFX Supervisor at MPC, said, “BFX is great for the university, when I was at the university a long time ago and people from the industry would come, I would always go up to them and find out everything they knew. This Festival, which brings back this sort of talent from the industry so the students can engage, is great.”

Other talks and workshops at the Festival included Chris Drew, who spoke about Annie Awards-winning TV series Adventures of Paddington, Kevin McDowell of BAFTA-winning games company Creative Assembly, providing a session about leadership in the videogames industry. Dorset-based companies LoveLove Films and Outpost VFX both presented in person, with Georgina Hurcombe (LoveLove Films) talking about children’s show Pop Paper City and Ian Fellows and Craig Tonks (Outpost VFX) talking about creating a Western as a part of their work on Tom Hanks’ News of the World.

For more information about the BFX Festival 2021 watch the videos, including a round-up of the Festival, a conversation with Ben Jones, and a conversation with Ron’s Gone Wrong director JP Vine.

For more information about visual effects at Bournemouth University, including the National Centre for Computer Animation (NCCA) visit the BU website.