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MFA Animation Grad Won Best in Animation at Student Emmys

“I still remember the applause after my film was screened,” said Jihwan Jung, Academy of Art University Alum who earned an MFA from the School of Animation and Visual Effects. His third short film, Monster and Dumpling was screened at over twenty film festivals. Recently, this film won Best Animation at the Emmy’s Student Awards. 

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“The Emmy’s is one of the most prominent award organizations in the film and television industry and I have been very interested in the Emmy Student Awards for a long time,” said Jihwan. “That’s why I submitted my film.”   
 
The Emmy Awards gala celebrating the student submissions enthralled Jihwan. “I met many famous people and movie stars, they were very kind,” said Jihwan.
 
Jihwan watched some amazing short Animation films from Academy of Art University students prior to deciding to attend the Academy, the most memorable for him being Bert by Moonsung Lee. “This film was so impressive, it made me want to pursue a Master’s Degree at the Academy,” said Jihwan.

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Two years in the making, with help from ten other Academy of Art University students, Monster and Dumpling was complete. Jihwan said, “I was inspired by old novels and Japanese animation. I wanted to show people how our prejudice and discrimination create even more neglected people in our society. That’s why I created two unusual characters in a remote place.” He didn’t want to make this story very serious or critical, but wanted it to be entertaining and artistic. “That’s why I chose to portray the story through animation production,” said Jihwan.
 
  
Monster and Dumpling was a collaborative project, though Jihwan wrote the story, worked on the art and animation, produced and directed the film. Academy of Art University instructors Tom Bertino, Chris Armstrong and Bert Chung, “gave me a lot of good advice and critiques for this project,” said Jihwan. 
  MFA Animation Student wins Student Emmy MFA Animation Student wins Student Emmy
 
Since he graduated from the Academy, Jihwan has worked for Rhythm and Hues and is currently working for Zynga, Inc. on their new game project.

Now, as an award winning film maker, Jihwan plans on making a short film about North Korea, and as a character animator, he plans on updating his animation demo reel.

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According to this Academy Alumni, patience, passion and responsibility are the most important qualities when it comes to being a professional artist. “Making your own short film is definitely a big challenge. Even when you are having a hard time, don’t let it get you down, and do your work step by step. When you complete a project, you’ll find that you grew up to be a good artist,” said Jihwan.

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