Dean Atta’s Poem to Become Animated Short supported by the BFI

October 5, 2023

Poet, Dean Atta and One6th Animation invite you to an exclusive screening of their animated film.

To celebrate National Poetry Day, poetry and stop-motions fans are being given the chance to join Dean Atta and the filmmakers of 'Two Black Boys in Paradise' at a special crew screening in 2024. This captivating project – which received early development support from actor Ian McKellen - draws inspiration from the poignant words of award-winning poet and author Dean Atta, who not only serves as a co-writer but also assumes the role of Executive Producer. Actor, musician, and presenter Jordan Stephens is set to lend his voice as the narrator.

Through its unique storytelling, the film takes audiences on a rich visual journey through Atta’s poem, readable in full here; it explores the complex themes of homophobia and racism with a depth and artistry synonymous with its Manchester-based, stop-motion creators, One6th Animation Studio. It was supported by the BFI Short Form Animation Fund, awarding National Lottery Funding.

Dean says,

“I’ve collaborated with several filmmakers to make short films from my poems, and I’ve learned a lot about visual storytelling along the way but working as an executive producer on TBBIP has been an experience unlike any other. I’ve worked with the team on the script and storyboard, given feedback on the animatic, picked Jordan Stephens to be our narrator and sat in meetings with Aoife Hayes at the BFI. I’ve felt my voice has been heard and valued every step of the way and I’m so proud to be part of this team."

For your chance to attend a screening with Dean and the filmmakers - follow @One_6th on Instagram, click on the TBBIP poster and tag someone in the comments who belongs in your own version of paradise.


One6th is an award winning, Stop-Motion animation studio, founded in 2018. Born from a love of filmmaking at a scale of 1:6, One6th is an ever evolving stop-motion studio, with an appetite for keeping it fresh. We're all about creating captivating animation, gravitating towards bold ideas and exploring new perspectives. You'll find their studio in central Manchester where we create everything from props, sets and puppets all the way through to animation and principle photography.

Dean Atta

Dean Atta is a British author from London. He is a Malika’s Poetry Kitchen member, National Poetry Day ambassador and LGBT+ History Month patron. Dean’s poems have been highly commended by the Forward Prizes for Poetry and shortlisted for the Bridport Poetry Prize and Oxford Brookes International Poetry Competition. His books have been praised by the likes of Bernardine Evaristo, Benjamin Zephaniah and Malorie Blackman. Dean’s debut poetry collection, I Am Nobody’s Nigger (The Westbourne Press, 2013), was shortlisted for the Polari First Book Prize. His novel in verse, The Black Flamingo (Hodder Children’s Books, 2019), won the Stonewall Book Award and was shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal, Jhalak Prize, Los Angeles Times Book Prize and Waterstones Children’s Book Award.