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WIA Announces 2024 ‘Stories x Women’ Program Participants

5 selected delegates will receive mentoring and coaching sessions from industry experts to prep to pitch projects next week at Annecy 2024; initiative supports women animators from emerging animation communities in Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.

Today, WIA announced the five delegates selected for the 2024 cohort for Stories x Women, a program aimed at increasing diversity of voices in animation globally. Now in its third year, the program is aimed at increasing the diversity of voices in animation globally. Its goal is to support access to international opportunities for women animators who want to tell their authentic stories from emerging national film and audio-visual animation communities of Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America. The Walt Disney Company and UNESCO are sponsoring the 2024 program.

Participants, selected from over 140 applications received from 30 countries, will benefit from a series of mentoring sessions led by internationally acclaimed animation experts, as well as 1:1 coaching sessions that will prepare them to pitch their projects in the upcoming 2024 Annecy International Animation Film Festival and Market (MIFA), including as part of the MIFA Pitching Sessions. The pitches will be presented June 11 from 10:45 a.m. to 12 p.m. CEST in the Impérial Palace in the Haendel Room.

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

  • AIMÓ (AIMO) - Brazil. A project led by Fernanda Alves Salgado (with Giuliana Danza) 
  • The Human and the Android - Indonesia. A project led by Theresa Cornelia 
  • Jaé Natal! (S’up Xmas) - Brazil. A project led by Camila Padhila (with Roger Keesse) 
  • Karetabla - Argentina. A project led by Maria Rosario Carlino (with Carlos Zerpa)   
  • OARONA - South Africa. A project led by Thandiwe Mlauli (with Angel Pitre)  

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

"As Stories x Women enters its third year, we are extremely proud to see how it’s helped spotlight the talented animation creatives of underrepresented gender identities from Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America,” said WIA president Marge Dean. "I am grateful for the continued support from Disney and am thrilled to welcome UNESCO as a new partner in supporting animation in developing industries. Collaboration is key to achieving gender parity in animation."

"UNESCO believes that investing in women creators is a catalyst for cultural diversity, equality, and sustainable societies,” added UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Culture Ernesto Ottone R. “This is why our collaboration with WIA and The Walt Disney Company resonates with our mandate, to accompany the development of inclusive cultural creative industries in the Global South.”

“Supporting women in animation is essential to Disney's commitment to empowering the next generation of storytellers,” said Disney Branded Television executive vice president of Television Animation Meredith Roberts. “This support helps ensure that a multitude of voices, cultures, and perspectives are represented in animation, fostering richer narratives that resonate with global audiences.”

Source: WIA

Debbie Diamond Sarto's picture

Debbie Diamond Sarto is news editor at Animation World Network.