Animex news

University joins the Potter BAFTA celebrations

A university hailed the role of its Computing graduates as the finale of the record-breaking Harry Potter film franchise clinched a prestigious BAFTA.

More information
Teesside Computing graduate Dan Zelcs, who worked on the final Harry Potter film.

Teesside Computing graduate Dan Zelcs, who worked on the final Harry Potter film.


Seventeen graduates from Teesside University’s renowned School of Computing, which boasts an international pedigree in the fields of animation and computer-aided design, worked on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, in a variety of creative roles.

The film, a huge global success, was recognised by the British Academy of Film & Television in the category of Special Visual Effects, holding off stiff competition, including Steven Spielberg’s current box office hit, War Horse.

Visualisation graduate Dan Zelcs is a Lead Rigger with the Moving Picture Company (MPC) and his role involved working with the modelling team to model the film’s famous characters. A skeleton is then created which is used as a puppet for the animators to bring back to life.

Zelcs held this role for the last three Harry Potter films, leading the rigging team through the film’s battle scenes. Dan also helped to bring Nagini, Lord Voldemort's pet python, to life, and was also heavily involved in realising the much talked about death of Voldemort, the famous wizard’s nemesis.

Zelcs shared tales from the set when he returned to Teesside University as a guest speaker at Animex, the University’s annual international festival of animation and computer games, which marked its 13th year this month.

Seeing the result on the big screen

Dan said, 'What is really satisfying is when you see the finished result on the screen. At times it feels like a regular job but at other times I have to pinch myself that I’m involved.'

Chris Williams, Director of Animex and a curriculum developer in the School of Computing, said, 'I remember teaching Dan and it's no surprise that he rose to such a senior position in one of the UK's leading and most respected studios. Dan's achievements show that if you're prepared to work hard and take advantage of the opportunities the animation and visual effects courses here at Teesside provide, you can go on and become a prominent figure in the industry.'

Tremendous news

Dr Simon Stobart, Dean of the School of Computing, said, 'To learn that a total of 17 graduates from the School of Computing at Teesside University contributed to the success these films which culminated with winning a BAFTA for visual effects is tremendous news. Our staff and students here at the University work very hard to ensure that the quality of the work they accomplish is of the highest international standards. Dan is a great ambassador for the School and I wish him every success for the future.'


13 February 2012

In the News

Dan Zelcs up for Oscar for Harry Potter special effects
Newcastle Sunday Sun (Web) , 20/02/2012,
Teesside University graduate Dan Zelcs is part of the team behind Harry Potters Academy Award-nominated special effects. And when the A-listers turn out on the red carpet for the glamorous awards next


Dan, Harry and Oscar
Sunday Sun, 19/02/2012, p.36
The well renowned Moving Pictures Company film studio who won a BAFTA for Special Visual Effects on the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 film and is now joulsting for an Academy Award "Osc


Teesside joins the Potter BAFTA celebrations
Love Middlesbrough, 15/02/2012,
Teesside University is noted to have played a part in the making of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, which won a BAFTA for Special Visual Effects.


University celebrates Bafta success
Northern Echo, 16/02/2012, p.18
Teesside University is basking in the limelight because 17 graduates from its school of computing worked on the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, which won a Bafta for best Special V

Latest news

Latest tweet

Our partners

Teesside University. Link will open a new window Cineworld. Link will open a new window Expotees. Link will open a new window Thistle. Link will open a new window NextGen. Link will open a new window