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<<October 2016>>
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: ireland, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 104
1. Big data in the nineteenth century

Initially, they had envisaged dozens of them: slim booklets that would handily summarize all of the important aspects of every parish in Ireland. It was the 1830s, and such a fantasy of comprehensive knowledge seemed within the grasp of the employees of the Ordnance Survey in Ireland.

The post Big data in the nineteenth century appeared first on OUPblog.

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2. Britain, Ireland, and their Union 1800-1921

Historians of both Britain and Ireland have too often adopted a blinkered approach in which their countries have been envisaged as somehow divorced from the continent in which they are geographically placed. If America and the Empire get an occasional mention, Europe as a whole has largely been ignored. Of course the British-Irish relationship had (and has) its peculiarities.

The post Britain, Ireland, and their Union 1800-1921 appeared first on OUPblog.

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3. Cartoon Forum Reflects Europe’s Fast-Growing And Changing TV Animation Industry

The 27-year-old pitching and co-production market is one of the most important events in the world of European TV animation.

The post Cartoon Forum Reflects Europe’s Fast-Growing And Changing TV Animation Industry appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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4. “Clown”: The KL-series pauses for a while

Those who have followed this series will remember that English kl-words form a loose fraternity of clinging, clinking, and clotted-cluttered things. Clover, cloth, clod, cloud, and clout have figured prominently in the story.

The post “Clown”: The KL-series pauses for a while appeared first on OUPblog.

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5. Artist of the Day: Eoghan Kerrigan

Discover the art of Eoghan Kerrigan, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day.

The post Artist of the Day: Eoghan Kerrigan appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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6. Cartoon Saloon’s ‘The Breadwinner’ Moves Into Production

Check out new artwork from the upcoming Cartoon Saloon film.

The post Cartoon Saloon’s ‘The Breadwinner’ Moves Into Production appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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7. ireland: listowel writers' week 2016

This weekend Pugs of the Frozen North met the blazing heat of the west coast of Ireland for Listowel Writers' Week and The National Children's Literary Festival. The lovely Irish even provided us with a splendid pug named Oscar!

Listowel's gorgeous, my co-author Philip Reeve and I had fun wandering around looking at the beautifully painted shop fronts, bakeries and pubs.

And we even got to meet the wee folk! Here I am, after partaking of the 'Drink Me' bottle, meeting the Queen of Listowel.

I didn't get time to do a lot of drawing (other than on stage) but here's a rough one I did after a couple hours at John B. Keane's pub.

Our first event was to a couple hundred kids for a Pugs of the Frozen North schools event. Here's Philip showing off the yellow trousers he uses to scare off polar bears.

Tweeted by Sarah Webb

We got to see some excellent pug drawings...

The following day, we did another Pugs event, then I did a Dinosaur Police picture book event. And I'm VERY SAD I don't have any photos of Philip being Trevor the T-Rex. He did an excellent job.

I did a little experiment for the drawing part of the event; usually I just teach everyone how to draw a T-Rex, but I got a bit more ambitious and thought I'd start them off making their own T-Rex-themed book.

It was quite a stretch, particularly for the concentration span of the youngest children, but their parents were awesome about pitching in and helping, and I actually had a slightly older crowd than usual for this event, so lots of them tackled the project admirably.

In this one you can see the cover, decorated front endpapers, three pages of story, and a back cover with blurb and price tag.

I was impressed with what the kids did and I hope they go away and finish their books, it'd be fun to see how they do it. I told them that the difference between an aspiring author and an author is that an author finishes creating the books. So if they finish making their book, they will be a genuine authors. Which is true! And to be a published author, all they need is to make more than one copy of the book (with a handy photocopier or printer), and that's being self-published. So perhaps we will get a few self-published authors coming out of that event.

Tweeted by Sarah Webb

One of the fun things about book festivals is catching up with friends I've seen in various events around the country in past years. Here's the most excellent Kim Harte, who is a Book Doctor! You can go into her Book Clinic and she will listen to what you're interested in and recommend books you might like. It was very popular, I don't think she had even time for a loo break for four hours!

Here's Ireland's new Children's Laureate na nÓg, illutrator PJ Lynch. Philip and I got to see an exhibition of his work from the span of his career at St John's Theatre in the centre of town. He did a video interview with me about drawing, so maybe I'll get to post that fairly soon.

More fun guests we ran into: Joanne Harris (whom we'd gotten to know a bit at the Emirates Lit Fest a couple years ago)

And Francesca Simon and Steven Butler, whom we actually see fairly often!

Writer Sarah Webb was in charge of Author Care for the children's book part of the festival, and we couldn't have been cared for better. Sarah's one of the sweetest people you'll ever meet, but she also manages to do ten times more than any of us. Here she is with PJ and Alan Nolan (who was very nice in giving us lots of lifts in his car).

It'd been cold in London but Ireland was ROASTING hot. Here's Philip, attempting some extreme sunscreen:

Huge thanks to everyone who helped make the festival run so smoothly!

Here's Liz Dunn, the chair of the festival, who was awesome at making sure we always had good food and drink and introduced us to lots of people.

I wasn't in Ireland very long, but one morning I did manage to get down to the beach at Ballybunnion with Philip right before our event. (Which explains why I'm here in a sea cave in slightly odd beach wear.)

And a few more shots of Philip and me attempting to make the perfect Irish rock album cover.

You can follow Listowel Writers' Week on their Facebook page and Twitter.

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8. 80 Animated Series Will Be Presented At Cartoon Forum in September

If you want a preview of the TV shows that European animation companies will be producing over the next few years, Cartoon Forum is the place to be.

The post 80 Animated Series Will Be Presented At Cartoon Forum in September appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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9. Guru and GKIDS Join Production of Cartoon Saloon’s ‘The Breadwinner’

Two animation companies have joined the production of Cartoon Saloon's "The Breadwinner" in its push toward completion.

The post Guru and GKIDS Join Production of Cartoon Saloon’s ‘The Breadwinner’ appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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10. interview with irish children's laureate pj lynch!

New Irish Laureate na nOg PJ Lynch is going to be recording a series of interviews with different illustrators, and I was lucky enough to be his first person! Here's a chat we had at Listowel Writers' Week about drawing, influences, a peek at a stage event with Philip Reeve and a tutorial, how to draw one of the pugs from Pugs of the Frozen North. Hope you enjoy it! :)

You can follow PJ Lynch on Twitter: @PJLynchArt

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11. Hasbro Gets Serious About Animation With Acquisition Of Ireland’s Boulder Media

Hasbro has bought the studio that animated "Wander Over Yonder," "Gumball," and "Danger Mouse."

The post Hasbro Gets Serious About Animation With Acquisition Of Ireland’s Boulder Media appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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12. Brexit and the border – problems of the past haunt Ireland’s uncertain future

On 23 June 2016 a majority of people in England and Wales voted to Leave the European Union. A majority of Scottish voters opted to Remain and, so too, did a clear majority of voters in Northern Ireland. These results have produced uncertainty about the future direction of relationships across these islands.

The post Brexit and the border – problems of the past haunt Ireland’s uncertain future appeared first on OUPblog.

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13. An Aran poem.

A smoke in Aran


Background grumbling

Brings closer words around me.

A slow stream of familiar scent

From plug tobacco packed loosely in a pipe.


I turn to see this silent silhouette

Swaying slowly at the bar.

Aran jersey pulled, blue colored,

Under a grease stained jacket.


Another sip of the black stuff.

Another puff on the pipe

Anchored by well-worn teeth

In a salt-cured face.


Nicotine stained fingers press tightly

On the crinkled cap.

A red glow.

Another blue cloud backlit against the open door.


No voice. No flash of eye.

A dark pillar of a man.

Like upturned currach

Black-bellied to the western sky.


The pipe goes down

As the pint goes up.

Memories and taste

Blend together in remembered motion.


A shuffle of a weathered boot.

A cough.

A well-aimed spit,

Like hardened plug, finds home in ancient brass.


A push of the glass.

Another pint.

No words spoken

And silence never broken.


Eyebrows like thatch above

Those dark brown eyes,

Buried in a wrinkled world

Of terror in a black night at sea.


Hands worn like burled hazel.

Worn smooth and hard

From years of oars

And pounding surf.


No separation between

Nails and skin.

Deep ridges from years of hauling stinging meshes

On fingers, gnarled and almost gone.


A movement, slow and even paced.

He pushes away into the night.

And casts off from the bar.

Like moon warmed skins of tar.


Denis Hearn 2015


Ireland April 2012 211.jpg web large

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14. ‘Coda’ by Alan Holly

A lost soul stumbles drunken through the city. In a park, Death finds him and shows him many things.

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15. Review: Those We Left Behind by Stuart Neville

Stuart Neville takes his writing up another notch in his latest thought-provoking and tragic crime novel. This isn’t a crime novel where a mystery needs to be solved or a vicious killer is stalking victims, although you are kept guessing at different times. This is a crime novel about what happens afterwards, after a crime […]

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16. Bagger island has been released.

My latest book in the Conor and Anne trilogy has been released. It is available at Amazon or on Kindle.


Chapter 8


The cackling voices of fast flying puffins disturbed the morning scene as they approached the high cliffs on Bagger Island and began to descend onto the soft tufts of grass.  The comical birds returned from a fishing trip and were getting ready for their last few weeks of habitation on the island before going back out to sea until their return the following year.  Black and white coats made them look like waiters out for a day trip on the island, and their large orange and red beaks gave the impression that they were living too far north as parrots having missed their country.

The young puffins were ready for the ocean trip that lay before them and had learned to fend for themselves by diving deep into the water to find their prey.  Onshore they stood outside their burrows and watched the boating activity taking place below them on the slow rolling swells.

Two boats lay anchored below the cliff loaded with scuba divers and gear.  The divers stood around a chart laid out on the deck and were planning their next activity.

“That was a good haul last night,” said Soren to Ronan English, one of the divers, “Twenty gold bars and a bag of coins. We need to make another shipment to France by the end of the week.”

“The cave is getting full at this point,” Ronan replied.

Soren Van den Berg was working with the other divers to remove gold artifacts from a galleon wreck located just off the south of the island. The long red hair flowed around his face like Medusa’s nest of snakes.  His skin-tight diving suit gave him the appearance of a black seal basking in the morning sun.

The secret treasure hunt had been in operation for three years.  Soren and his partners, Ronan English, Redmond Doyle and Karl Kramer had been contracted by Don Rua, the owner of Bagger Island, to remove the treasure and smuggle it out of the country.

Don, the self-proclaimed Irish chief of the family Donal, operated the salvage company which had found the galleon using side-scan sonar, a remote underwater vehicle and a team of divers. They had set up a marine research business to hide their true purpose and so far it seemed to be working.

Bagger Island lay on the edge of international waters off the southeast of Ireland. Caves were visible on the south side and nesting gannets, puffins and other sea birds lived on the eastern side where the island’s back provided shelter from the prevailing wind.  Tourists visited the island frequently to observe the bird activity and recreational divers took part in organized trips to the underwater world below.

Nature had carved large blow holes and caves into the craggy terrain and when the tide was right the powerful waves would enter the hollow chambers and blow the water up into the air with a terrifying roar.

A large stone house above the layer of rocks had been built by the family centuries before. It sat behind a grass landing strip which had been shaped out of the thick sod along the back of the island. The strip was used by Don and previously, by his deceased father who had also lived on the island.  Don and his pilot, Joel, flew a Cessna 172 and housed it in a metal hanger at the end of the runway.

Tunnels populated the rock like an ant farm and drew spelunkers who often visited the island to explore the mysterious spaces.  Don allowed all this activity to take place, but also had other motives in mind. A busy tourist area was a perfect cover for the clandestine activity occurring beneath the waves. He knew he had to protect his cache or it would be over-run with treasure hunters.

In 1556 the Spanish galleon, Bella Maria, hadwrecked on a reef just off the south side of the island. She was filled with gold bars and coins from the New World which were destined for Spain but she never made it due to a huge storm in the Celtic Sea and sank off the island where she had remained, lying on the seabed for centuries like an unopened treasure chest. The wreck was covered with sand and kelp and difficult to salvage because it rested on the edge of a shallow shelf before the terrain plunged over eight hundred meters to the bottom.

The diving team lived in one wing of Don’s stone house and operated their dive business from there.  A perfect location on the high side of the island, it gave the inhabitants a 360 degree view around the island in case their activities were interrupted by some nosey government or meddlesome treasure hunters.

“That was a good night’s work!” said Soren as he eased the throttles forward on the service boat and headed for the small dock at the bottom of the rocky cliff.

“We’re goin’ to need more supplies from Cara Quay,” said Redmond. “Fuel’s getting low also.”

“We’ll get over there later today,” Soren replied. “Hey Red, don’t forget to buy more beer.”

“Don’t worry, I won’t. I’ve a couple of things on the boat to fix first, then we’ll be ready to get underway.”


Cover June 2015

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17. A river poem.



Oily flows toward the widening space

Of the Norse Gods creeping below the tidal fall.

The boiling waves move inexorably downstream

As the exiting tide adds salinity to its fresh taste.


Deeper here and greener with a tinge of brown.

The folding wefts of water make rivulets

In the passage from brackish and then to salt.

The wind scurries across the uneven planes to rippling squall.


Dark stones watch from the ancient banks.

Glassless space where hope passed and left

To find a new and better space.

Past ancient woods of yew and tangled hazel.


Deep nets cast deep below the turning surface.

To snare and capture the giant of the depths.

Spawned in its bowels and carried back

To make a smothering trip to ancient mountain stones.


The dapple and dart of the fishers deep,

As they rest and wait below the barnacle cover

Of ancient stones arched in majesty over its mighty girth.

A slow splash of white flashes, as a swan bellies down in its coolness.


Morning cows wade stiffly in the flowing motion.

Drinking slowly with deep gasps of inhaled swallow weed.

They stand and watch as the Dublin train rattles overhead

And plunges steaming, into the black gash of deep cut stone.


Oars cut deep in early falling tide as a fishing cot

Turns ancient spiraling wake to complete the circle

And encase the meshed walls of entanglement.

To pull the hopeful catch onto muddy shores.


Wider, expanding and creeping slower with steady flow

It moves past the place where Harvey hung on the bridge of death.

Past the warm confessionals of the Franciscan fathers.

Past ancient barnacles standing safely on pitch pine timbers.


Past the stone faced ballast bank with its stacks of stone.

Turning slowly to port and outwards to the open sea.

Passing shallows and channels.

Free now, it pushes east into the golden rising morn.


Denis Hearn 2009

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18. ‘My Darling’s Shadow’ by Conor Whelan

A stylized film noir in three minutes.

The post ‘My Darling’s Shadow’ by Conor Whelan appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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19. Eyes in the wood.




Eyes in the Wood.


Someone said to go there.

To walk down the tree-lined lane

And enter the moss covered passageway

Of beech and hazel.

Deeper now with thicker moss beneath my feet,

I step back into the past,

And wonder whose steps I have followed

Into the darkening shadows.

Silence is everywhere.

Moss covered and listening always

To my next step back in time,

Where night creatures roam about.

I step around a lordly beech,

A master of this place.

And find myself inside a grove of hazel.

I pause and wonder what I heard.

The low grumble of a mighty crow,

Or something else.

The sniffing of a deer at sunset,

Or rabbits setting up a nightly watch.

Eyes dilated with tension building.

It is all around me.

The Druids are here.

They whisper with their ancient voice.

I move an eye deliberately and there it is,

Right in front of me.

A hooded crow with piercing eyes

And long black beak.

It speaks to me with one eye cocked awry.

With ancient sound and flash of beak.

I feel the words but do not hear them,

 Just deep vibrations echoing into the night.

Other waves of sound surround me.

More voices closer now,

Almost touching, but holding back,

To separate me from their pack.

Afraid no longer but unable to speak.

I let their world work wonders in the night.

I’m welcome here, I think.

To run is not a need to pamper.

The hooded Druid speaks once more

And then retreats back into his hazel maze.

Muffled silence wraps around me

As carefully I too retreat into the dying day.

Denis Hearn 2015

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20. Kiss Me, I'm Irish...

Actually, I’m one-quarter Irish thanks to my maternal grandmother, but that never stopped me from celebrating St. Patrick’s Day! FYI - in Book #6 of The Last Timekeepers series, I'm planning on setting my time travel sites on this beautiful country. So, sit down, take a load off, and pour yourself a pint of green ale. Aye, here’s to Saint Paddy, banisher of snakes, and founder of monasteries and churches. Now, while you’re waiting for your corn beef and cabbage dinner to boil, have a gander at these six amazing places to visit if you ever get a chance to venture over to the Emerald Isle, suggested to me by my author bud and paranormal romance queen, Dominique Eastwick.

Giants Causeway in Northern Ireland

Renowned for its polygonal columns of layered basalt, is the only World Heritage site in Northern Ireland. Resulting from a volcanic eruption 60 million years ago, this is the focal point of a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and has attracted visitors for centuries.

Constructed over 5,000 years ago (about 3,200 B.C.), making it older than Stonehenge in England and the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. Newgrange was built during the Neolithic or New Stone Age by a farming community that prospered on the rich lands of the Boyne Valley. Archaeologists classified Newgrange as a passage tomb, however Newgrange is now recognized to be much more than a passage tomb. Ancient Temple is a more fitting classification, a place of astrological, spiritual, religious and ceremonial importance, much as present day cathedrals are places of prestige and worship where dignitaries my be laid to rest.

Kilmainham Gaol Prison in Dublin

Built in 1792, it is Ireland's most famous disused prison. It held throughout the years many famous Nationalists and Republicans in members of the Society of United Irishmen (1798), Young Irelanders (c1840s), Fenians and Land agitators, Parnell, Davitt. The leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising were executed here. The prison was closed in 1924. This building gives a good insight into the history of Irish Republicanism.

Dublin Castle (doing Kilmainhaim Gaol first helps with the history) Originally built in the 13th century on a site previously settled by the Vikings it functioned as a military fortress, a prison, treasury, courts of law and the seat of English Administration in Ireland for 700 years. Rebuilt in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, Dublin Castle is now used for important State receptions and Presidential Inaugurations.

Cliffs of Moher

The Cliffs of Moher are one of Ireland's top Visitor attractions and are a designated UNESCO Geo Park. The Cliffs are 214m high at the highest point and range for 8 kilometres over the Atlantic Ocean on the western seaboard of County Clare. O'Brien's Tower stands proudly on a headland of the majestic Cliffs. From the Cliffs one can see the Aran Islands, Galway Bay, as well as The Twelve Pins, the Maum Turk Mountains in Connemara and Loop Head to the South. The Cliffs of Moher take their name from a ruined promontory fort “Mothar” which was demolished during the Napoleonic wars to make room for a signal tower. And I saved the best for last…

Guinness Storehouse

The best view of the city and Ireland’s number one visitor attraction. Go figure! The home of the world famous GUINNESS® brand, this historical building is central to Dublin’s and Ireland’s heritage, and has been continually updated to create a blend of fascinating industrial tradition with a contemporary edge. Oh yeah, and you’re also invited to pour your own perfect pint. Cheers!

Now, before you go check on your corn beef and cabbage, please raise your frosty glass high to toast Saint Patrick and Ireland with me: May your pockets be heavy and your heart be light, may good luck pursue you each morning and night. Slainte!

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21. The Easter Rising – Episode 33 – The Oxford Comment

This past Easter marked the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising, an armed uprising by Irish rebels against British rule in 1916. An insurrection that lasted almost a week, the Easter Rising began as a small rebellion on Easter Sunday and turned into a full uprising by Easter Monday, 24 April 1916. Rebels seized prominent buildings in the city of Dublin, took up arms against British troops, and declared Ireland as a republic and independent from the United Kingdom. However, the rebels were quickly overpowered and surrendered. Although the uprising had little Irish support at first, the execution of rebellion leaders transformed public opinion about British rule and as a result, became a turning point during Ireland’s struggle for independence.

In this month’s episode of The Oxford Comment, host Sara Levine chats with William Murphy, author of Political Imprisonment and the Irish, 1912-1921; Fearghal McGarry, author of The Rising (Centenary Edition): Ireland: Easter 1916; and Robert Schmuhl, author of Ireland’s Exiled Children: America and the Easter Rising. Together, they engage in fascinating conversation about the experience of women during the Easter Rising, the cultural and national identity that was forged between the rebels in prison after the uprising, and the role Americans played as support and inspiration for the Irish.

Featured image credit: The shell of the G.P.O. on Sackville Street (later O’Connell Street), Dublin in the aftermath of the 1916 Rising. Date: May? 1916 NLI Ref.: Ke 121. Photo by Keogh Brothers Ltd., photographers. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

The post The Easter Rising – Episode 33 – The Oxford Comment appeared first on OUPblog.

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22. 100 years after the Easter Rising

This year marks the one hundredth anniversary of the Easter Rising, a violent attempt by Irish republicans to end British rule in Ireland. Though a momentous event in itself, the Rising should be understood in the context of a decade of revolutionary activity during which Irish political culture was profoundly radicalised and partition came to look inevitable. It must also be understood in the context of the First World War.

The post 100 years after the Easter Rising appeared first on OUPblog.

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23. Remembering Easter 1916 in 2016

Remembering the Easter Rising has never been a straightforward business. The first anniversary of the insurrection, commemorated at the ruins of the General Post Office on Easter Monday, 1917, descended into a riot. This year its centenary has been marked by dignified ceremonies, the largest public history and cultural event ever staged in Ireland and, in Northern Ireland, political discord, and menacing shows of paramilitary strength. Over the past century, the Rising’s divisiveness has remained its most salient feature.

The post Remembering Easter 1916 in 2016 appeared first on OUPblog.

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24. A tale of two cities: Anzac Day and the Easter Rising

On 25 April 1916, 2,000 Australian and New Zealand troops marched through London towards a service at Westminster Abbey attended by the King and Queen. One of the soldiers later recalled the celebratory atmosphere of the day. This was the first Anzac Day. A year earlier, Australian soldiers had been the first to land on the Gallipoli peninsula as part of an attempt by the combined forces of the British and French empires to invade the Ottoman Empire.

The post A tale of two cities: Anzac Day and the Easter Rising appeared first on OUPblog.

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25. BBC and Netflix Team Up For CGI ‘Watership Down’ Remake

The four-part series will offer a new take on Richard Adams' novel.

The post BBC and Netflix Team Up For CGI ‘Watership Down’ Remake appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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