Nicholas Wulstan "Nick" Park, CBE (born 6 December 1958) is an English filmmaker of stop motion animation best known as the creator of Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep.
Park has been nominated for an Academy Award a total of six times, and won four with; Creature Comforts (1989), The Wrong Trousers (1993), A Close Shave (1995), and Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005).
Park was born in Preston in Lancashire, England and grew up in Longton, Lancashire. He is the middle child (of five) of Celia, a seamstress, and Roger Park, a photographer. His sister Janet still lives in the Preston area. He attended Cuthbert Mayne High School (now Our Lady's Catholic High School). He grew up with a keen interest in drawing cartoons, and as a 13-year old made films with the help of his mother – who was a dressmaker – and her home movie camera and cotton bobbins. He also took after his father, an amateur inventor, and would send items – such as a bottle that squeezed out different coloured wools – to Blue Peter. He studied Communication Arts at Sheffield Polytechnic (now Sheffield Hallam University) and then went to the National Film and Television School, where he started making the first Wallace and Gromit film, A Grand Day Out.
In 1985, he joined the staff of Aardman Animations in Bristol, where he worked as an animator on commercial products (including the video for Peter Gabriel's "Sledgehammer", where he worked on the dance scene involving oven-ready chickens). He also had a part in animating the Pee-wee's Playhouse which featured Paul Reubens. Along with all this, he had finally completed A Grand Day Out, and with that in post-production, he made Creature Comforts as his contribution to a series of shorts called "Lip Synch". Creature Comforts matched animated zoo animals with a soundtrack of people talking about their homes. The two films were nominated for a host of awards. A Grand Day Out beat Creature Comforts for the BAFTA award, but it was Creature Comforts that won Park his first Oscar.
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