October 28 is World Animation Day -- and Canada is getting animated. The National Film Board is celebrating this special day with a 13-city tour of Get Animated!, a series of free public screenings from the NFB's Oscar-winning animation studios.
Get Animated! will showcase new creations from Canada's public producer, for young and old, from October 22 to November 9, 2008. The NFB Web site provides complete details on this event, along with free streaming video of NFB animated shorts, at nfb.ca/getanimated.
After celebrating the 65th anniversary of NFB animation, National Film Board studios have found a fresh burst of energy, producing works that have garnered international acclaim, including a record-setting 70th Academy Award nomination last year -- more than any production company or organization outside Hollywood -- as well as awards across Canada and around the world. Get Animated! is part of a broader commitment at Canada's public producer and distributor to ensure that Canadians from coast to coast have access to outstanding NFB productions.
Get Animated! free screenings will take place in Victoria, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax, as well as five communities served by the NFB's pioneering e-cinema network for francophone Acadian communities, in Moncton, Bouctouche, Caraquet, Edmundston and Kedgwick, New Brunswick.
Get Animated! will feature two programs: New Visions, a collection of the latest cutting-edge NFB releases – as well as a special Children's Program, presented in selected Canadian cities.
A new generation of artists are transforming the NFB's world-renowned animation studios, experimenting with innovative techniques and styles. The best new works are being featured in a 75-minute program of 10 films.
This program includes a pair of exquisite puppet-animated shorts: THE NECKTIE, by Jean-François Lévesque, offers a refreshing look at life in a dead-end job, garnering the Best Short Film Prize and the Audience Award for Best Canadian Short Film at the Montreal World Film Festival, while SAINTE BARBE, by Claude Barras and Cedric Louis, is the tale of a young boy's undying bond to his grandfather, capturing the Audience Award at the Melbourne International Animation Festival.
Other outstanding shorts in the program include RETOUCHES, a paint-on-celluloid masterpiece from multi-award-winning animator Georges Schwizgebel, and Theodore Ushev's DRUX FLUX, deconstructing industrial imagery to offer audiences a powerful look at the inhumanity of human progress. HA'AKI is a lyrical and wonderfully unorthodox interpretation of hockey as played in the mind of a lyrical and wonderfully unorthodox artist, Swedish-born filmmaker, actor, playwright, composer and painter Iriz Pääbo. In Nicolas Brault's timeless animated tale HUNGU, winner of the Best Animated Short Award at the prestigious Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films, a mother's soul is resurrected by music, returning strength and life to her child.
Seven titles are featured in the children's program, including Claude Cloutier's SLEEPING BETTY, a playful recreation of the classic fairy tale SLEEPING BEAUTY, as well as two shorts from the NFB's Hothouse program for emerging young animators, the delightful puppet-animated short THE SQUIRREL NEXT DOOR by Carla Coma, and Jody Kramer's LOST MONSTER HOP, about a banjo-picking monster. The total running time for the children's program is 54 minutes.
As a special gift for Canadian animation lovers, the NFB is also offering free streaming of two acclaimed NFB shorts on its Web site through to November 9, 2008.
Winner of the Best Short Film Award at Montreal's Fantasia Festival, Howie Shia's FLUTTER marries traditional and digital media with a mish-mash score of jazz, electronics and sampling to create an urban fairy tale. A film by Tali, AT HOME WITH MRS. HEN offers up a touching and comical tale about motherhood.