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Annecy 2012 - Some Impressions

Since I’m finding time so scarce this week, I have not yet finished any of my formal write-ups. So for now, I'm posting some initial images from the first couple days of the festival.

My cat Steven, doing his impression of the look the waiter gave me at lunch Monday when I told him the salad dressing had too much Dijon mustard.

By Dan Sarto

Since I’m finding time so scarce this week, I have not yet finished any of my formal write-ups.  So for now, I'm posting some initial images from the first couple days of the festival.  I apologize in advance if I don’t name everyone, or if I messup a name.  My memory has been dulled by too much cheese.

My typical breakfast at the Hotel du Nord, where we’ve stayed every year except once since 1997. Fatty charcuterie, a hunk of gooey brie on a baguette, a hard boiled egg so my mom won’t yell at me, jam on a crunchy toast log. Perfect.

The streets are deserted. Everyone must be inside the Grand Salle napping through a student short screening.

Animation director Candy Kugel, left, introduced by festival director Serge Bromberg, right, talks about the program she presented honoring animators who have passed away in the last year. Among the honored artists was Vincent Cafarelli, Candy’s creative partner at Buzzzco, who passed away this last December 1st.

Seated for a screening at the Bonlieu’s Grand Salle, from left to right: AWN’s Ron Diamond and his daughter Sara, who is behind/next to him but appears to his right, Matt O’Callaghan, director of the most recent set of Warner Bros.’ Roadrunner and Coyote / Sylvestor and Tweety / Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd shorts. In the row to Ron’s left, at the top, John Kahrs, director of the new Disney short Paperman, his wife Gennie, talent development dynamo Dawn Rivera-Ernster, two other Disney folks I didn’t yet meet, animation supervisor Patrick Osborne, Paperman producer Kristina Reed and her daughter.

Opening night at the Bonlieu. No matter I had to sit at the very end of the 3rd row, though I was there 20 minutes early and with the help of an usher, had staked out a great seat. Imagine, to my surprise, that the usher had brought me to the wrong section, and I had to move to one of 10 remaining empty seats practically under the stage. I’ll save the incredible story of how I even got my ticket to the Opening Ceremonies for a later post.

Serge Bromberg, onstage with director John Kahrs and producer Kristina Reed at the opening ceremonies, introducing the world premier screening of Disney’s new short, Paperman.

The creative team behind the animated feature The Suicide Shop, which premiered as well as the opening ceremonies.

Sony Pictures Animation presented a work in progress program for their next feature, Hotel Transylvania.

The film’s new director, Genndy Tartokovsky and Sony Pictures Digital Productions president Bob Osher walked the packed room through the film, sharing concept art, unfinished scene clips and full sequences. The cartoony and stylized designs look fantastic.

Disney presented some work in progress materials from Wreck-it Ralph, their next feature film.

Visual development artist Lorelay Bove walked the packed room through concept art, finished designs, the key plot points and some clips. Looks really funny.

Following Wreck-it Ralph, director John Kahrs discusses his film, Paperman.

A fitting tribute – a film about paper airplanes screened amidst a stage filled with paper airplanes. This is probably the first time Annecy’s odd infatuation with tossing paper airplanes onstage at screenings seemed aptly apropos.

Serge, former AWN editor-in-chief and current industry titan Heather Kenyan and Ron at the Chinese animation reception.

NFB chairman Tom Perlmutter at the Disney BBQ.

Teacher, animator, former teen hearthrob and skater Pat Smith with animation curator, historian and Projector festival director Susie Wilson at the Disney BBQ.

The most delicious pastry I’ve ever eaten. Slivered almonds, flaky dough, some warm apple infused glaze inside. Perfect.