FESTS AND EVENTS Annecy Animation du Monde Program Allies with Africa
The vigorously developing African animation industry has opened another international avenue with the latest MIFA Animation du Monde initiative.
The program will promote “animation without borders” with a first-ever pan-African pitching competition, organized by the Annecy International Animated Film Festival & Market, the African Animation Network and DISCOP.
Dubbed “Annecy — MIFA Pitches Animation du Monde,” the African initiative will comprise two semi-final rounds, coinciding with DISCOP Abidjan in Côte d’Ivoire (May 30-June 1) and DISCOP Johannesburg in South Africa (Oct. 25-27). Both events will turn out six projects, with all 12 competing in the Grand Finale at DISCOP Johannesburg for two finalist spots. The top two project creators will receive automatic entry into Animation du Monde 2018 at Annecy, including accommodation and MIFA accreditations.
Projects can be registered for the first round at DISCOP Abidjan through discopafrica.com through May 9.
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Shaw wrote and directed the feature, which tells the story of teenage Dash Shaw, whose regular life working on the school paper and hanging with best friend, Assaf, is thrown into turmoil when his seaside school tumbles into the ocean. Told with Shaw’s art hand-drawn on paper and scanned into a computer for animation, the movie looks like nothing else out there as it follows young Dash and his friends’ attempts to survive the disaster. It plays like a John Hughes movie crossed with Titanic or The Towering Inferno, and has earned rave reviews on the festival circuit.
Cartoon Doppelgänger The movie version of Dash Shaw bears some resemblance to the director in his teen years. “I was a nerdy teenager and I worked on the school newspaper, so I had friends like the friends in this movie,” he says. But he says the
ber Group is doing with a Brazilian company. “It would be much easier if we were on the ground somewhere in Latin America than just going over Skype like people mostly do with co-productions,” he says.
Goldsmith, for example, is charged with developing Cyber Group’s business in China and Asia.
“I would like this company in five years from now to be on all continents with its own imprint so that we could work locally, regionally and globally with the best talents on all continents,” Sissmann says. Artistic Devel
opment The second part of Sissmann’s plans for Cyber Group is artistic development, which he defines as growing the company’s ability to execute any kind of material it wants to as well as it can.
For example, he says, when Cyber Group started, it began by making CG preschool shows, which were unusual then. Having found success in that arena, the company set its sights on kids’ shows, and in the process added 2D animation capabilities to its palette. Now, it’s got hybrid and stop-motion projects