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Stuggart gets animated early April

12th Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film

From 1st – 6th April 2004 Stuttgart will once again be the Mecca of animated film. The International Festival of Animated Film, which was founded in 1982, is now entering its twelfth year. With over 40,000 visitors, the world’s second largest festival for animated film is the most important event of its kind
in Germany.
Over 1,200 film entries means that a new record has been set compared with the last Festival (932 entries). Concentrated around the Bosch Areal the Festival of Animated Film is an event whose venues, namely the Alte Reithalle, Atelier am Bollwerk, Treffpunkt Rotebühlplatz, Literaturhaus and Filmhaus Stuttgart are all within easy reach of each other. This year the IFAF will be presenting some 500 films, whereby the feature film section has been extended considerably: nine outstanding productions will prove that full-length animated films don’t only come from Hollywood and Japan.

The Competition Sections

1. International Competition
The highlight of the Festival of Animated Film: 50 short films from 18 countries will be competing for the awards. The films will include world premieres, e.g. the German/British co-production "The Final Solution"
by Phil Mulloy, as well as a number of German premieres.
Priit Pärn from Estonia has successfully produced a brilliant and bitter satire about the strange link between communism and capitalism with his film "Karl and Marylin". Films by other international stars of animated film and some of the audience’s favourites such as Bill Plympton from the USA and Konstantin Bronzit will be featuring in this year’s competition. Award-winning films like the comical but touching puppet animation "Harvie Krumpet" by the Australian Adam Benjamin Elliot, the fascinating unconventional 2003 Oscar nominee "Mt. Head" by the Japanese Koji Yamamura, and the film “Nibbles” by Christopher Hinton (USA), which was also nominated for an Oscar, will be screened, in addition to discoveries like the Spanish animated film "¿Con qué la lavaré?" by Maria Trenor. "¿Con qué la lavaré?" is a wonderful tribute to 20th century homosexual artists such as Jean Cocteau, Jean Genet and Rainer Werner Fassbinder. Yet again there is also a talented artist from Stuttgart, namely the film academy student Derek Roczen, representeed in the competition: the anti-war film "Captain Bligh" focuses on very intelligent weapons...

2. Young Animation
An exciting overview of new works by the animated geniuses of tomorrow.
A huge number of films were submitted to the competition, from which the jury then shortlisted 74 films from 27 countries. These high-quality competition films are characterized by a strong computer offensive from France. While the films from England and Northern Europe shine because of their characteristic
humour, the Asian productions stand out due to their distinct calmness and slowness.

3. Tricks for Kids
How does the elephant end up in the snail’s house? What stories is Grandpa’s guardian angel telling?
Why is the fish hanging in the tree? How does a new mountain simply appear in Japan? What does the prince wish for? Why is a rabbit in hot pursuit of a snowman? Iran, Russia, Estonia, Canada, Norway, Germany and Belgium are just some of the countries presenting the smart, exciting, breathtaking and
thought-provoking films featuring in the "Tricks for Kids" competition. All the films are well-made and show great inventiveness and highly-imaginative stories. The films screening on Friday, Saturday and Sunday are suitable for children over six and those on Monday for children over nine. They will be judged by a jury of children as well as an international jury. After the film screenings there will be talks with the filmmakers attending the Festival in the children’s lounge.

4. Feature Animation
In terms of full-length animated films, only productions from Hollywood and Japan were able to achieve worldwide success up until now – unjustifiably so. The feature film competition – featuring nine films for both children and adults – will prove that studios like Folimage, based in Valence, can hold their own on the international animated film circuit. It is also worth mentioning that France’s megastar Michel Piccoli is one of the voices in the original version of Jaques-Remy Girerd’s modern and humourous Noah’s Ark story
"La prophetie de grenouille". Girerd, who doesn’t even attempt to give his animals a natural appearance, has produced some wonderful scenes; for example, when the carnivores and herbivores get into a fight over the only food they have left, potatoes. The children’s animated film "Oseam" from South Korea is very impressive because of its atmospheric density and fascinating story of two orphans who live with Buddhist monks. Another outstanding children’s film has been produced by the well-known Japanese Studio Ghibli (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away): "The Cat Returns" – an adventure story set in ‘Cats’ Kingdom’ –
describes a little girl’s search for her real self. The trashy cult story "Tamala 2010: A Punk Cat in Space"
also comes from Japan – with fascinating 2D and 3D computer animation and superb graphic designs.
The state of the art in animated film. The French production "Les triplettes de Belleville" has also been nominated for two Oscars: Best Full-length Animated Film and Best Music.

International Competition
Albrecht Ade (Ludwigsburg), former head of the Festival of Animated Film and the Ludwigsburg Film Academy
Jerzy Kucia (Krakow), animated filmmaker
Alexander Tatarsky (Moscow), producer and animated filmmaker
Heikki Jokinen (Helsinki), journalist and animated film expert
Janet Perlman (Montreal)
Tricks for Kids
Susanne Schosser (Cologne), programme director at Super RTL
Koji Yamamura (Tokyo), animated filmmaker
Natalia Lukinykh (Moscow), journalist and artistic director of the Krok Festival
Young Animation
Ingrid Graenz (Mainz), editor at ZDF/3sat
Mait Laas (Tallin), animated filmmaker
Annick Teninge (Valence), responsible for production and sales at La Poudrière film college
Feature Animation
Audience Award

As always, the International Festival of Animated Film will be presenting an extensive supporting programme featuring over several hundred films, in addition to the previously mentioned competitions
films. Details are as follows:
1. Lego Films
The origins of the so-called ‘Brick Films’ date back to the 1980s. The movement, which is now made up of several hundred filmmakers, originated as a result of the possibilities of digital techniques. The works by the various filmmakers are distributed worldwide via the Internet.
This screening will provide an overview of the most important genres, from documentary films and Star Wars parodies to music videos, and also present the milestones of the Lego film scene.
Actual examples of films will provide an insight into which material-related difficulties the makers have to contend with during production and how they overcome these in a creative way.

2. Best of Animation
The masters of animation - Nick Park, Barry Purves, Paul Driessen, Mark Baker, Konstantin Bronzit and Abi Feijo - are back! Most of their films have won awards at either the Stuttgart Festival of Animated Film or other festivals. Some of the works being screened in this programme have even won an Oscar. The
remarkable features of all the films have to be their artistic trademark and original style.

3. In Persona
Three internationally well-known filmmakers will be presenting themselves and their work this year:
Janet Perlman – the Canadian, who has won many awards (including an Emmy Award and an Oscar nomination) alternates between children’s animated film and artistic animated film.
Jerzy Kucia – he attracts the viewers in an emotional way, like no other filmmaker does, with his visual poetry and very associative images.
Jochen Kuhn – his emotionally narrative paintings are an art of the conjunctive form, as can currently be found in the wonderful lyrics of the Hamburg rock group ‘Tocotronic’.

4. Studio Presentations
· Nukufilms (Tallin) – the oldest and largest studio for puppet animation in North-Eastern Europe will be presenting some of its funny and technically outstanding short films.
· Pilot Animation Studio (Moscow) – the most successful Russian studio, famous for its absurd sense of humour and outstanding children’s animated films.
· ACME Filmworks (Hollywood) – an independent studio with high artistic standards.

5. Studio Film Bilder Review
The Stuttgart studio Film Bilder, which was founded in April 1989, is now celebrating its 15th anniversary and will be inviting festival guests to attend a colourful review on Saturday afternoon. The highlights will
include the film premieres of “The Final Solution“ by Phil Mulloy and ”Die Strafe Gottes“ by Claudia Zoller. There will also be some live comical, musical and artistic surprises.

6. Presentations by Schools and Colleges
This year’s Festival will once again be presenting excellent talented young animated filmmakers from schools such as the National Film and Television School (NFTS)(London), the Ecole du Film d’Animation La
Poudrière (Valence), the Beijing Film Academy and the Ludwigsburg Film Academy.
7. Panorama International A journey through 23 animated film countries all over the world. Besides four programmes featuring an international mix of films, the focus of this year’s Festival of Animated Film is on China.

8. Generation Flash
It is no longer possible to imagine the more commercial context of adverts and music clips and artistically attractive content without flash animations from the Internet.
This programme will be presenting the link between online and film screenings by showing films on both the big screen and the Internet at the same time.
9. Animation goes East
This two-part programme is an attempt to reveal some of the fundamental characteristics of the political implications in Eastern European animated film. A difficult undertaking considering the very different political, social and aesthetical developments in the respective countries. In historical terms, the works focus on the days before and after Perestroika. While many of the films before Perestroika deal with the bureaucratic absurdities and deformations of socialism, the films after Perestroika, and above all, after the
fall of the Berlin Wall, not only look at the misdoings of Eastern European turbo-capitalism, but alsogrowing nationalism.

10. Night Screenings – Twelve in one blow
Twelve films about the common housefly, which ranks third after birds and dogs on animated filmmakers’ list of favourite characters, compiled by filmmaker Volker Siebel from Hanover. Their daring flying manoeuvres certainly prove challenging for animated images, as we will see in some of the films
featuring in this programme. Nevertheless, the death of the little fly, which is both meaningless and brutal, does not cause the viewers any grief. Quite the contrary: we happen to find the final fly-swat most amusing.

11. Prix ARS Electronica 2003
The best applied and freestyle computer animations from over 2,700 works submitted to the famous Media Art Festival ARS Electronica in Linz, Austria.

12. Children’s Workshops
· From fairy tales to animated film – in co-operation with Super RTL
Markus Werner (Super RTL) will be reciting two original fairy tales from the Danish children’s author Hans Christian Andersen and will be talking about the development of the TV series “WunderZunderFunkelZauber – The fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen“. Afterwards Oliver Schablitzki (responsible for co-production at Super RTL) will be answering questions on the production
during the workshop: How many people worked on the series? How long does it take to produce this kind of series? What has to be considered when making a fairy tale into a film? These and many other questions will be addressed during the workshop.
· Animated Film Workshop with the Trickboxx
Children over nine have the chance to produce a small digital animated film under the direction of an animated filmmaker.

13. Workshops at the Baden-Württemberg Film Academy
The workshops organized by internationally well-known animated filmmakers for both professionals and students at the Ludwigsburg Film Academy for the occasion of the International Festival of Animated Film have a long tradition. This year the following filmmakers will be sharing their knowledge and skills with participants: Evert de Beijer from Amsterdam (Vision on graphics – Visual
findings and drawn graphics in animated film and use of 2D-, 3D- and sound-software to make “Car Craze“) and Konstantin Bronzit from Petersburg (Storytelling and Humour in Animated Film).

14. Animated Film Talks at the Literaturhaus – in cooperation with the
Literaturhaus Stuttgart and Lift Stuttgart
· Animated Film Talk 1: We can do everything – even animated film?
Presented by Arne Braun (Lift Stuttgart), the discussion will focus on the question of whether there are historically and mentally-related requirements for animated film. Artistic animated film is not only characterized by a certain meticulousness and intensive work, but also by a certain love for detail.
Is it possible that there is a subcutaneous connection between the Swabian Pietism, the idealism of Hegel, the companies Märklin, Steiff and Mercedes-Benz and analogue and digital animation? Do other factors such as ingenuity and gender play a role in the production process? The discussion (with
Professor Kurt Weidemann, typographer, designer and teacher, along with other speakers) will not only be restricted to animated film...
· Animated Film Talk 2: Fairy Tales and Animation
Animated film as such is a medium which deals with impossible and supernatural worlds. The forms of presentation are unlimited and often more convincing due to their degree of abstraction. They defy the laws of nature (i.e. gravity) in the true sense of the word. But why do animated and comic figures seem to have a “magical” effect on both young and old? Are animated films something like the
"biblia pauperum" of fairy tales for the present day? – Questions that Ruth Lingford (psychologist, animator and lecturer at the NFTS Beaconsfield) and other speakers will be looking into.

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