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‘La Chute,’ ‘This Magnificent Cake!’ Earn Animfest Zagreb Honors

Festival wraps with multiple honors for shorts, features, children’s films, Croatian films and audience favorites.

Short film ‘La Chute’ and feature ‘This Magnificent Cake!’ won the grand prix at the 28th World Festival of Animated Film -- Animafest Zagreb.

The 28th World Festival of Animated Film -- Animafest Zagreb ended Saturday with the award ceremony held in Cinema Europa. After extraordinary six days devoted to animation, with more than 400 films in the program and numerous side events, the time has come to present the awards to the best films and authors.

In the Grand Competition, short film jury members Jeanette Bonds, Sanja Borčić, Piotr Dumała, Robert Morgan and Pedro Rivero gave the grand prix to La Chute by Boris Labbé, produced by Sacrebleu Production in France. The award was given for a kaleidoscopic film that unfolds across an epic painterly canvas and echoes medieval visions of the apocalypse to show us timeless and tragic vision of humanity.

The same jury awarded the Golden Zagreb Award for creativity and innovative artistic achievement to Nikita Diakur for his film Fest (Germany) that brings fresh perspective, digital innovation and creative use of contemporary technology while referencing modern subcultures.

The Zlatko Grgić Award for the best first film made outside of an educational institution was awarded to the German-Mexican film 32-Rbit by Victor Orozco Ramirez for the brave and impressive personal animated vision rooted in the contemporary social media landscape.

Each of the jury members presented one special mention award. Bonds gave hers to the Croatian film How Steel Was Tempered (produced by Kreativni sindikat) by Igor Grubić; Borčić was impressed with the Polish film III (produced by Animoon) by Marta Pajek; Dumała singled out the Iranian film Mr. Deer by Mojtaba Mousavi; Morgan selected the Dutch-Belgian film Finity Calling by Jasper Kuipers; and Pedro Rivero presented his special mention award to Negative Space by Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter.

The Grand Competition’s feature film jury, which consisted of Olga Bobrowska, Joni Männistö and Arsen Anton Ostojić, gave the grand prix to This Magnificent Cake! (Belgium, France, Netherlands) by Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels, produced by Beast Animation and Vivement Lundi. The jury cited the film’s masterful exploration of a colonial history of their own country in a subtle, humoristic and cruel way, as well as for amazing cinematography and creating both convincing and expressive character design.

The same jury also awarded their special mention award to the Man-Woman Case (France) by Anaïs Caura for depicting a true historical subject whose issues strongly resonate in contemporary society, as well as for brave artistic approach which combines stylization and documentary values.

The student film competition and Croatian film competition jury, consisting of Meghan Oretsky, Natko Stipaničev and Chi-Sui Wang, decided to give the Dušan Vukotić Award for the best student film to Facing It (U.K.) by Sam Gainsborough, made at NFTS.  

The same jury also decided to award special mention to films Take Me Please (Hungary, Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design Budapest) by Olivér Hegyi and Bless You! (Poland, The Polish National Film, Television and Theatre School in Lodz) by Paulina Ziółkowska.

The best Croatian film of this year's Animafest is Cyclists by Veljko Popović, made by Croatian-French co-production (Lemonade 3D / Krupni kadar / 3D2D animatori), while the special mention went to Jelena Oroz for Two for Two, produced by Bonobostudio. Award for best Croatian film is sponsored by Croatian Film Director's Guild.

Vimeo Staff Pick Award went to Rachel Gutgarts for A Love Letter to the One I Made Up (Israel, Bezalel Academy), and was presented by Meghan Oretsky.

Winners of the films for children competition were selected by a jury consisting of Izak Cunjac, Mia Duić, Linda Lisičak, Petra Fištrić and Oskar Hušman Domes. The award for the best film for children was awarded to the film Birdlime (Canada), by Evan DeRushie. The jury also gave special mention to the American film Two Balloons by Mark C. Smith.

Lastly, the Mr. M Short Film Audience Award went to Alice Guimarães and Mónica Santos for their film Between the Shadows, while the Mr. M Feature Film Audience Award goes to Patrick Imbert and Benjamin Renner in France for The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales.

The 29th World Festival of Animated Film -- Animafest Zagreb will be held June 3-8, 2019.

Source: Animafest Zagreb 2018

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Tom McLean has been writing for years about animation from a secret base in Los Angeles.