France's Annecy Festival Director Jean-Luc Xiberras died on December 26, 1998 at 57 years old after a long battle with illness. The Mayor of Annecy, the festival President & Board and the festival staff unanimously saluted his courage and determination for continuing to be a force in the festival's operation during his term of illness. Animation World Network's General Manager, Annick Teninge, who worked closely with Xiberras as Annecy's Assistant Director for six years, said, "Throughout my tenure working with Jean-Luc, I admired how he created the world's largest and most prestigious festival, building on each year's successes with only a small staff and his dedication to and belief in the cause." Xiberras started his career in the 1960s as an organizer and director for various cultural associations. He started as director of the prestigious Annecy Festival in 1982 helping make the now yearly gathering the largest animation festival in the world. He will be missed by many.
Animation World Magazine will publish a tribute/obituary in our February 1999 issue. If you would like to contribute photos and remembrances, please send them via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax to (213) 464-5914. Submissions must be received by January 12, 1999 in either English or French. Please mark your e-mails and faxes "Xiberras Tribute."