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FIAPF and WIA Announce ‘Stories x Women’ Program Participants

Initiative provides mentoring and coaching sessions from industry experts to prep women animators from emerging animation communities in Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America to pitch projects at Annecy 2022.

FIAPF (International Federation of Film Producers’ Associations) and Women in Animation (WIA), have announced six delegations selected to participate in their recently announced "Stories x Women” program. Aimed at increasing diversity in the industry, the initiative provides women animators from emerging national film and audio-visual animation communities in Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America access to international resources and opportunities.

The program will provide the selected creatives a chance to participate in a series of mentoring sessions led by internationally recognized animation experts, as well as 1:1 coaching sessions, preparing them to pitch their projects at the upcoming 2022 Annecy International Animation Film Festival and Market.

The selected delegations are (listed in alphabetical order by country):

  • La Sombra del Altiplano (Highland's Shadow) - Argentina. A project led by Paula Boffo (with Patricio Plaza). 
  • Cotton Bottom Town - Colombia. A project led by Luisa Fernanda Velasquez (with Andrés Felipe Rodriguez Rodriguez).
  • La Carpeta de Greta (Greta's Journal) - Peru. A project led by Elva Alessandra Arrieta Tabuzo (with Saul David Anampa Mesias). 
  • Miss Camel - Saudi Arabia. A project led by Haifaa Al Mansour (with Brad Niemann).
  • Rorisang & the Gurlz - South Africa. A project led by Dr. Tshepo P. Maaka and Kabelo Maaka.
  • Gannu - Thailand. A project led by Aimsinthu Ramasoot and Saraswathi Vani Balgam.

To be considered for participation in Stories x Women, projects could have up to two team members, but were required to have at least one woman in a lead position (i.e., producer, director, or screenwriter).

"As the global voice for producers worldwide, FIAPF promotes all forms of film genres, including animation and its universal language,” commented FIAPF president Luis Alberto Scalella. “With Stories x Women, we want to support the work of women animators from regions that are less visible in the international market. FIAPF has been working on diversity and gender equality for more than a decade, launching Stories x Women is an extra step in our collective action. We are extremely happy to run this initiative with Women in Animation and to benefit from the support of Walt Disney Studios and Triggerfish Animation, one of the pioneers in animation in Africa."

"For more than 25 years, WIA has been on the frontline of gender equity in animation, fighting for the empowerment of talented yet underrepresented artists and creatives in the industry and advocating for a more just and equitable system for our global field,” remarked WIA president Marge Dean. “Stories x Women gives these deserving creators the support they need to bring their stories to life. We're thrilled to be part of such a wonderful initiative that champions our mission of bringing together the global animation community to empower and advocate for people of underrepresented gender identities in all facets of the industry."

“Having had the good fortune to work with voices around the world on both Moana and Raya and the Last Dragon, I’m thrilled beyond words to be part of this fantastic initiative to support, mentor and invite this international group of talented female filmmakers to Annecy, the world’s foremost animation festival, helping them gain access to the resources and connections necessary to bring their unique creations to the screen, and inspire the next generation of women in animation,” added Disney Animation producer Osnat Shurer.

The program is sponsored by Walt Disney Animation Studios, with additional support by Triggerfish Animation.

Debbie Diamond Sarto's picture

Debbie Diamond Sarto is assistant news editor at Animation World Network.