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Animafest Zagreb 2017 Kicks off June 5

Forty-four short films from countries led by France, Poland, Germany, Canada, the U.S.  and Scandinavia selected to compete at the 27th World Festival of Animated Film in Croatia.

World Festival of Animated Film – Animafest Zagreb once again turns the Croatian capital into a global animation hub from June 5–10th. Over 300 films will screen in competitions, themed programs and retrospectives, exhibitions, workshops, lectures, school presentations and open-air events in the city streets and parks.

From recent works, to masterpieces of the past, Animafest Zagreb 2017 will cover all areas of animation. Animafest’s theme this this year is the connection between comic books and animation.


Among the 1600 submitted entries from 76 countries, 800 were entered into the Grand Competition – Short Film. Forty-four films qualified, dominated by France with nine works. Poland, Germany, Canada and USA also have a strong presence in the competition this year.

The competition also includes six Croatian films: “Hedgehog’s Home” by Eva Cvijanović made in cooperation with NFB, an adaptation of a fable that opened at Berlinale; Michaela Müller’s painted-on-glass “Airport,” “Nighthawk” by Špela Čadež, “Manivald” by Chintis Lundgren and Božidar Trkulja’s tongue-in-cheek stop motion fantasy “The Last Quest.”

The selected films combine computer animation, video games aesthetics and classic techniques to create unique visuals ("Amalimbo," "Martin Cries," "Ugly"), and occasionally delve into uncharted territories of digital expression. On the other end of the spectrum, some filmmakers turned to classic black and white drawings, literary sources and the history of animation. Other short films in the completion include fairy tale “Among the Black Waves,” hardboiled noir “Beer” by C. Bukowski, literature-inspiredThe Empty,” black and white “Black,” female-driven work “Impossible Figures and Other Stories II” and stop-motion animations “Cerulia” and “Forgotten Reason.”

Feature-length animation at this year’s Animafest includes nine productions from China, Japan, USA, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, Belgium. Films include family fantasy The Red Turtle of Ghibli Studio by Michaël Dudok de Wit, My Life as a Zucchini about a bitter-sweet life in an orphanage, Louise by the Shore by Jean-François Laguionie, an adaptation of a fairy tale The Girl Without Hands, anti-war anime In this Corner of the World, dark humor neo noir Have a Nice Day, family film My Dogs JinJin & Akida, a story about a stubborn Missouri family Where It Floods and Revengeance, the latest film by Bill Plympton and Jim Lujan.

The Student Film Competition includes films with subjects like body and sexuality, women and transgender rights, diversity, heritage and humor. Represented in the styles and techniques of surrealism, post-impressionism, primitivism, gag cartoon and 3D animation, these films are visual treats that use lavish drawing to speak about delicate issues ("Camouflage," "Volcanoisland," "Chilli," "Ocean," "Eñvor," "Inner Light," "Perfect Town," "Tough," "In Other Words"). France dominates this competition as well with five films. The award for best animation school will be presented to FAMU from Prague, accompanied by a special retrospective in the Animation Schools section. All the Student Competition screenings are free of charge.

The 16 entries in the Croatian Film Competition provide insight into the rich animation tradition of a country participating increasingly in European and global co-productions. To get a picture of the current state of global animation production, turn to the World Panorama event.

This year’s Animafest presents animated film adaptations of comic books, including iconic features (Fritz the Cat, Savage Religions) and short films, a selection of works by Croatian comic book authors and a motion comics exhibition (ULUPUH Gallery). The retrospective program Masters of Animation presents works by the Dutch director Rosto, and the winner of Animafest 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award Borivoj Dovniković Bordo, both renowned comic book authors and animators.

The symposium includes animated music videos, Cartoon d’Or nominees, a Video Game Workshop and Animafest Scanner IIII, which focuses on connections between comic books and animation, as well as changes in the animation world. This keynote speaker is the winner of Animafest’s 2017 Award for Outstanding Contribution to Animation Studies, Maureen Furniss, American author, historian and animation theorist.

Animafest Zagreb 2017 offers educational workshops, the Children’s Film Competition, a comprehensive Family Program and special events set in cultural centers across different neighborhoods in Zagreb. This year’s Children’s Film Competition focuses on girls and boys who find their inner strength to change the world. Ideal for children accompanied by parents, the Family Program this year features a selection of classic Russian fairy tales adapted into animated shorts -- including the popular “Gruffalo” -- and the feature film Long Way North.

Families, children and other animation aficionados should not miss Animafest’s Open Air events at parks Zrinjevac, Ribnjak, Gradec and Art Park, with screenings of Persepolis, April and the Extraordinary World, Magic Mountain, Endgame, Corto Maltese, Late Night Work Club: Strangers and Savage Religions. Also join Animafest’s cinema picnic.

Buy tickets to Animafest on the website and find out more information on Facebook and Twitter, Instagram. Festival passes enables entrance to all festival programs and special events, except the Grand Opening.

Source: Animafest Zagreb