Seneca celebrates alumni involved in 2018 Oscar winners Coco and Shape of Water

Six alumni worked on Academy Award-winning films

Toronto, March 05, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Seneca community is celebrating this week as six alumni contributed to Academy Award-winning films Coco and Shape of Water. Coco earned Best Animated Feature and Shape of Water won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Music Score and Best Production Design.

Seneca 3D Animation graduate Brendan Beesley worked on the animation for Coco, and Visual Effects for Film and Television alumni Aditi Doshi, Mark Hammond, Ankit Kenia, Angel Li and Matt McEwan worked on visual effects for Shape of Water.

"We're very proud to have the talents and impressive work of Seneca graduates featured in Oscar-winning films," said Mark Jones, Chair of Seneca's School of Creative Arts and Animation. "This diverse group of alumni is a shining example of Seneca's significant presence in Hollywood and the global animation industry."

Coco follows a 12-year-old boy named Miguel who, despite his family’s generations-old ban on music, dreams of becoming an accomplished musician. Beesley was responsible for animating Miguel and his great-grandmother Mamá Coco.

Beesley attended Seneca’s 3D Animation program in 2004, which helps students build career potential as accomplished studio animators by combining creativity and technical skill with knowledge-of-motion theory, timing, storytelling and design. Beesley credits his Seneca education for putting him on the path to professional success in digital animation.

“What was cool about Seneca was that there were people who worked in the industry,” said Beesley. “They recognized students who had talent and were able to help with your career.”

Shape of Water tells the story of a cleaning woman who does not speak and discovers a merman-like creature in a tank at a government lab. Five Seneca alumni worked on the visual effects for the film. All five graduated from the Visual Effects for Film and Television program between 2009 and 2016. The graduate certificate program focuses on the software tools used to create visual effects – and the issues involved in combining these effects with live-action footage.

Seneca's School of Creative Arts and Animation is ranked among Canada's top training programs for animation and special effects and has been at the forefront of developing Canadian talent for more than a decade. Seneca's Animation Art Centre was recently named one of the top ten animation schools in the world.

About Seneca

With campuses in Toronto, York Region and Peterborough, Seneca offers degrees, diplomas, certificates and graduate programs renowned for their quality and respected by employers. It is one of the largest comprehensive colleges in Canada, offering nearly 300 full-time, part-time and online programs. Combining the highest academic standards with work-integrated and applied learning, expert teaching faculty and the latest technology ensure Seneca graduates are career ready.

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A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

Seneca 3D Animation alumnus Brendan Beesley.

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