27th ITFS edition, running May 5-10, and 14th Animation Production Days, set for May 6-8, in Stuttgart, Germany, have been canceled.
*** Updated: A spokesperson from Animation Production Days has just announced that the event, scheduled for May 6-8, has been canceled, and that all accreditation fees already paid will be refunded.
As the shutdown of studios, theme parks, cinemas and events continues to expand in response to the growing coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, festival organizers at Film- und Medienfestival gGmbH have just released a statement announcing the cancelation of the Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film 2020 (ITFS), scheduled for May 5-10 in Stuttgart, Germany; sources have told AWN that the associated Animation Production Days event, scheduled for May 6-8, has been canceled as well. According to the statement from event directors Prof. Ulrich Wegenast and Dieter Krauß, an online version of ITFS 2020 is currently being created and will be held in some form from May 5-10, with details to be released when finalized. Below is the full released statement:
It is with great regret and due to the spreading of the coronavirus that we, Film- und Medienfestival gGmbH, announce the cancellation of the Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film (ITFS) scheduled for May 5 to 10, 2020. This is based on the immediately effective and indefinite decree of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration Baden-Württemberg of Wednesday, March 11, 2020 to the Public Health Departments, according to which large-scale events involving more than 1,000 people must be cancelled as well as today's decision of the state capital Stuttgart, according to which events in culture, education, sports and leisure as well as meetings, even with less than 1,000 participants, are prohibited with immediate effect.
In the past few days we have been in intensive exchange and close coordination with competent authorities as well as our board members and partners. To protect the health of our staff and audiences from the region and the whole world as well as anyone involved in our events has, of course, the highest priority for us, not only with regard to the current coronavirus threat.
Online Edition of ITFS 2020 and optimal presentation of the 2020 competition entries at the 28th ITFS 2021!
The programme for this year’s ITFS has been established. So as to provide a platform for the more than 1,800 films from around the world submitted for competitions, we are planning a digital version of ITFS for the Festival period from May 5 to 10, 2020, and to make competition entries available for streaming / as video-on-demand. All ITFS 2020 competition entries will also be shown and judged on a big screen in the cinema at the 28th ITFS 2021. The jury meeting for ITFS 2020 will take place in the run-up to ITFS 2021. We would like to present and honour the winners of ITFS 2020 at the opening of the 28th ITFS on May 4, 2021. Thus, our enthusiastic ITFS audiences – locally and globally – will have the pleasure to view the best of recent animated films in the categories short film (International Competition), feature film (AniMovie), student film (Young Animation), and children’s film (Tricks for Kids) in spite of the Festival cancellation in virtual form. On the other hand, the ITFS 2020 competition films will have the opportunity to be screened in 2021 under the best presentation conditions. This also applies to the new competition section “Trickstar Nature”. All further supporting and special programmes shall be presented at ITFS 2021 – as far as possible.
We look forward to the next Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film taking place from May 4 to 9, 2021 and keep you up-to-date on ITFS 2020 online: https://www.itfs.de/en/news/
Prof. Ulrich Wegenast, Managing Director, Programme
& Dieter Krauß, Managing Director, Organisation & Finances
as well as the entire Film- und Medienfestival gGmbH team
With the number of theme parks, studios, productions, and events around the world voluntarily shutting down for an undetermined amount of time as authorities work to contain the expanding coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, ITFS’s cancelation was expected. Cartoons on the Bay, E3, FMX, GDC, GTC, MipTV, Monstra, NAB, and SXSW, are just a few of the industry events recently canceled or postponed. Pressure to consider cancelation surely continues to mount on organizers of other key festivals and conferences, including the Annecy Animation Festival, set for June 15-20 in Annecy, France, and SIGGRAPH 2020, set for July 19-23 in Washington, D.C.
Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.