At the Y

Quite the Characters


Collage of Animated Characters from BYU's animation program
Courtesy BYU Center for Animation

You probably won’t hear BYU animation students shouting, “We’re No. 1!” but we’ll shout it for them. Animation Career Review named BYU’s animation bachelor of science program the best in the country.

BYU’s program is small—around 80 students compared to hundreds at other schools—but mighty: it has 18 student Emmys to its name and placed first last year on the ultimate video-game stage, the E3 College Game Competition. And BYU alums have gone on to work at Disney, Pixar, and DreamWorks, their handiwork visible in Coco, Moana, Up, Kung Fu Panda, and more. Here, see characters from BYU’s latest and greatest projects.

Animation of a wicked old lady with pointed glasses and green slippers.
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There are no straight lines in Death and Delilah. The film, due out this year, pushes the limits of perspective and design, showing that BYU animators don’t just re-create the same look. Courtesy BYU Center for Animation.

Animation of a lean, beautiful young woman in a pink dress and fashionable purse posing in a way that attracts.
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In Papá, a dearly departed father plays guardian angel over his daughter—and her dating life. In this no-dialogue film, the romantic accordion-and-mandolin-infused score lit up the screen—and nabbed a student Emmy for best music composition. Watch the film here.

Courtesy BYU Center for Animation.

Animation of a smiling, friendly monster with scales and a face like a lizard, fuzzy hair on his back, a long furry tail and two horns near his big ears.
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Grendel, named after this little guy, takes the cake as the hardest, most technical film undertaken by BYU animators—the longest, both in terms of film length and production time. The Beowulf-inspired tale follows this “dreaded” monster who really just wants to share his baked goods. Watch storyboarding and scenes from the film here.

Courtesy BYU Center for Animation.

Animation of a big horn sheep with obvious strength and a mean expression.
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A bighorn sheep flummoxes a cocky climber in Ram’s Horn, BYU animators’ first foray into Looney Toons (think Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner humor). This homage to Bugs Bunny and Co. creator Chuck Jones clinched a student Emmy. Watch the film here.

Courtesy BYU Center for Animation.

Animation of a violin based character with the bow as a sword and musical armor.
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BYU’s video game Beat Boxer took the top prize at the 2018 E3 College Game Competition. In the game—a cross between Mortal Kombat and Guitar Hero—characters inspired by a violin and an electrical guitar fight to the beat. Watch a playthrough of the game here.

Courtesy BYU Center for Animation.

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