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DreamWorks Animation Presenting Two New Shorts at Annecy

Studio lineup for the 2018 Edition of the Annecy International Animation Film Festival also includes a sneak-peek into the making of DWA’s 2019 release, ‘How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.’

Directed by William Salazar and produced by Jeff Hermann, ‘Bird Karma’ will open the 42nd edition of the Annecy International Animation Film Festival.

DreamWorks Animation unveiled its programming lineup for this year’s Annecy International Animation Film Festival. The animation industry’s most prestigious film festival, this year’s 42nd edition runs June 11-16.

Annecy attendees will be given a sneak peek into the making of the studio’s 2019 release, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, the highly-anticipated culmination of the Academy Award-nominated trilogy directed by Dean DeBlois and produced by Brad Lewis and Bonnie Arnold.

The presentation will take place on Thursday, June 14, in the festival’s main venue, the Bonlieu Theater (Bonlieu Grande salle). “As well as being a major artist, Dean DeBlois is a longtime friend of Annecy. We are excited to welcome him this year and present his work in a context that will emphasize his great talent,” Annecy Film Festival artistic director Marcel Jean commented. “The How to Train Your Dragon franchise is closely linked to our Festival and this is why we are eager to offer our audience the chance to preview footage from the film.”

This year, DreamWorks Animation announced its newly launched Shorts Program, which will see the release of its first two titles in 2018 with Bird Karma and the upcoming Bilby. Designed to showcase artists within its own ranks, the program was created to identify and provide opportunities for emerging talent, hone creative and technology tools, and explore the limitless boundaries of imagination through animation. The two shorts have been given prestigious opening and closing night slots.

Directed by William Salazar and produced by Jeff Hermann, the 2D-animated Bird Karma tells a delightfully lyrical and fully unexpected tale of a long-legged bird’s journey of blissful joy, inescapable greed and the accidental discovery of the consequences when too much is not enough.

Bilby is directed by Liron Topaz, Pierre Perifel and JP Sans, and produced by Jeff Hermann and Kelly Cooney Cilella. Set in the harsh environment of Australia’s Outback, the short follows a lonesome Bilby who finds himself an unwitting protector, and unexpected friend, to a helpless (and quite adorable) baby bird.

Directed by Liron Topaz, Pierre Perifel and JP Sans, ‘Bilby’ will close Annecy 2018.

“DreamWorks is giving us the great honor of screening in Annecy the first two short films from their recently launched production initiative,” Jean adds. “We are excited to open the festival with Bird Karma and close it with the screening of Bilby. Both short films reveal completely different facets of the creative strengths offered by a studio like DreamWorks.”

Bird Karma had its World Premiere at the 2018 New York International Children’s Film Festival. Annecy marks the European Premiere for both shorts, and the World Festival Premiere for Bilby.

“Annecy has established itself as the premiere animation festival of the world, and we are extremely honored to be included in its line-up with our first two short films and work-in-progress footage from How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World this year,” said DreamWorks Animation Film Group president Chris deFaria. “It’s always a thrill for our filmmakers and artists to show their work to Annecy’s knowledgeable and appreciative audience.”

In addition, to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of DreamWorks’ The Prince of Egypt, Annecy will debut a fully remastered print of the Academy Award winning film (schedule TBA). Released in December of 1998, and directed by Brenda Chapman, Steven Hickner and Simon Wells, the film received two Oscar nominations and won the Oscar for Best Original Song, “When You Believe.”

On Tuesday, June 12 (9:00 AM 10:30 AM, Impérial Palace, Salon Impérial), DreamWorks Animation Television will present “A Conversation with Rodrigo Blaas,” as part of the Mifa Campus. The Emmy-winning director and executive producer of DreamWorks Trollhunters will share a behind-the-scenes look at bringing this epic series to life and the path that led him to DreamWorks. Blaas will also offer a sneak peek of the upcoming Netflix original series 3 Below, the next chapter in Guillermo del Toro’s Tales of Arcadia trilogy.


Source: Annecy International Animation Film Festival

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.