Animation company has gone Bonkers

An animation company has notched up another high-profile television hit after completing two months' special effects work on a new prime-time ITV series.

An animation company has notched up another high-profile television hit after completing two months' special effects work on a new prime-time ITV series.

The TV show called Bonkers starring Liza Tarbuck and Mark Addy, one of the stars of The Full Monty, is the third production Hartlepool-based Qurios has worked on for its makers Lime Pictures.

The company, which employs eight staff, first teamed up with Lime Pictures on Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks before working together on last year's Mission Impossible-style thriller The Outsiders starring Nigel Harmon.

The business, founded by Hartlepool artist Niel Bushnell in 2002, has doubled in size, this year achieving £300,000 sales.

Qurios digital artist Chris Chatterton, who worked on Bonkers, said: "It was exciting to go down to the studios and speak with the directors about how they wanted the shots to look before going back and creating the different effects.

"The work Qurios produces for television is very technical but to an extremely high standard and production companies realise what capabilities we have here."

Bonkers, which starts on February 1 at 9pm on ITV, is about a husband and wife whose marriage is falling apart. Tarbuck's character, Helen, begins to fantasise about an international film star who appears to be trapped in a parallel universe.

It is these fantasy sequences that have been produced by Qurios alongside an animated montage called The Telly Bears. The sequence is effectively a show within a show and required Qurios to devise and create an original animated children's programme that would be watched by the characters in Bonkers.

Chris added: "It was great fun working on the dream sequences as they allow you to let your imagination run wild and get really creative. The animations for Telly Bears were hard work and very detailed but the results are superb. It was like working on two different shows in one. I can't wait to see the series in full.

"I went down to the Lime Pictures studios in Liverpool for a few days to work alongside the Bonkers production team and we learned a great deal from each other.

"We have completed a lot of television work over the last couple of years, including a series for the BBC and it is encouraging that Lime Pictures chose to work with us again."

Jamie Hall, group head of production at Lime Pictures, said: "Qurios always become a key member of the production team and their enthusiasm, creative vision and professional attitude are vital to producing the ambitious programmes we strive to make."

Qurios is also riding high after receiving the Professional Excellence in Animation Award at the weekend's Royal Television Society Awards and is busy producing effects sequences for the new series of the BBC sci-fi comedy Hyperdrive.

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