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Animafest Zagreb Announces ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Theme for 2015 Edition

The 25th Animafest Zagreb finds its thematic backbone in the children’s literary classic, Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice in Wonderland,’ published exactly 150 years ago.

Zagreb, Croatia -- The 25th  Animafest Zagreb, which this year for the first time joins the short and feature edition, finds its thematic backbone in the contemporary literary classic, Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, published exactly 150 years ago. The world from the other side of a rabbit hole playing with logic is equally attractive to both children and adults, and exceptionally inspiring to animation. It is no wonder that the book saw many animated adaptations, with Disney’s Alice in Wonderland (1951) as one of the most successful feature classics. We are very pleased to be able to look back at Disney’s Alice and also see some other feature approaches to the theme, like the one by great Czech surrealist Jan Švankmajer (Alice / Něco z Alenky), who perceived the story as an immoral dream. A small treat is also Little from the Fish Shop by Czech puppet film master Jan Balej.

Animafest Zagreb is preparing two intriguing short film sections referring directly or indirectly to Alice and partly consisting of 18+ films which are not suitable for children. The first section includes direct adaptations of Alice, with two Disney’s short films, from 1923 and 1936, followed by Jabberwacky from Švankmajer’s earlier phase, a curious interpretation of Alice commissioned by the American Mental Health Institute, and a surreal sexual film by Vince Collins Malice in Wonderland. The other section includes films inhabited by unusual creatures like unicorns, twisted polygonal 3D bodies or diverse rabbits.

The most successful competition films this year will be judged by an international jury consisting of many important names of world animation. The short film jury, opposite Oscar winner Chris Landreth (Ryan, 2004), includes the founder and director of British Animation Award Jayne Pilling, Croatian animator Veljko Popović, last year’s Grand Prix winner Joung Yumi, and British film and theatre critic Leslie Felperin (The Hollywood Reporter, The Guardian, Radio Times). The feature and Croatian film jury consists of Jung Henin, the winner of Animafest’s Grand Prix, Croatian producer Siniša Juričić, and Audience Award 2013, and founder and director of International Animated Film Festival Anim’est from Romania Mihai Mitrica. The best student and commissioned film will be judged by Greek journalist and Zippy Frames website editor Vassilis Kroustalis, independent curator and art critic Branka Benčić and our festival friend Max Hatler.

Animation goes MSU!
We also know which three-channel site-specific works we will see from 26 May on MSU’s media façade, as part of the attractive programme Animation goes MSU, for the fourth time. Leila Topić, MSU curator, and Daniel Šuljić, Animafest Zagreb artistic director, selected 16 animated works out of many entries by local and international artists, all of them interesting animation names, including Danijel Žeželj, Max Hattler, Nikki Schuster.

International Symposium Animafest Scanner II 2015
International symposium Animafest Scanner II, taking place on 10 and 11 June at Školska knjiga (Masaryk Street 28) and its second edition will try to identify the latest findings in animation studies and create synergy between theoretical and practical discourse. The main speaker this year is GiannalbertoBendazzi, a famous film historian, author and professor, the winner of Animafest’s first Award for Outstanding Contribution to Animation Studies. Next to him, around 20 prominent world theoreticians from Europe, USA, Canada, China and Australia will speak.

Source: Animafest Zagreb

Jennifer Wolfe's picture

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network, Jennifer Wolfe has worked in the Media & Entertainment industry as a writer and PR professional since 2003.