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Ottawa International Animation Festival Returns From September 22


Ottawa International Animation Festival is one of the biggest events in the animation calendar. Founded in 1975 the festival has gone on to become the biggest animation festival in North America, attracting the cream of talent from Canada, The United States and further afield.

The 2021 edition of the festival will be taking place online (no prizes for guessing why) and will run from September 22- October 3. Running simultaneously The Animation Conference (TAC) offers exclusive events for industry attendees. All events will be geo-locked and only open for attendees in Canada.

The switch to a virtual format doesn't mean the selection is any less impressive, and OIAF will be screening 107 shorts and seven feature films, selected from a total of 2528 entries from 104 different countries. The shorts will be split across multiple categories: Canadian Student films, Commissioned films, TV series and narrative and non-narrative short films. Additionally, the out-of-competition Panorama will screen Canadian and international shorts and international student films.

The features competing are Canadian films Archipelago and Mount Fuji Seen From  A Moving Train,  American film Blood Of The Family Tree, Brazilain feature Bob Spit: We Don't Like People, China's Chicken Of The Mound, Elulu from Chile and Japan's Fortune Favours Lady Nikuko

In special screenings and retrospectives OIAF offer three programs of work from The Rhode Island School Of Designs (RISD), as well as events highlighting the work of Jacques Drouin (The Many Imprints of Jacques Drouin), Jodie Mack (A Factory of Raw Essentials: The Films of Jodie Mack), Mike Maryniuk (Flannel Fever Dream: The Films of Mike Maryniuk), Wong Ping (Cathartic, Crass and Colourful: Wong Ping’s Urban Fables) and Mariusz Wilczyński (Ghosts of a Different Dream – The Films of Mariusz Wilczyński).

As always the festival also features a strong line-up of the industry even aimed at animation professionals. Industry talk highlights include Developing With Disney TVA,  Behind The Scenes: The Trainee and Mentor Journey At Netflix Animation, What Makes A portfolio Stand Out At Walt Disney Animation Studios, First Time Film-Makers: Behind The Scenes on  The Mitchells Vs The Machines and My Carrer as A Storyboard Artist, featuring Ottawa based Industry veterans José Pou and Bradley Cayford. There are also industry roundtables on Diversity In Animation and Mentorship In Animation, as well a series of events sharing insight into careers at Nickelodeon, including Preschool and Short and Feature Development,

There are also Networking events as well as this year's edition of Pitch This! where 10 semi-finalists get to pitch their series to professionals and get feedback live,  and are in witch a chance of winning a  $5,000 prize courtesy of Mercury Filmworks (Hilda). For animators wanting to get involved themselves, Fast Track presented by Tonic DNA, gives animators one shot to meet with each of their targets for 12-minute-long “speed pitching” meetings, to a line-up of producers, platforms, and distributors from around the world.

Standard passes to the festival start at $30 CAD for post-secondary students, and $60 CAD for a full pass. Thanks to Ottawa’s Jam Filled Entertainment, there is a free day pass offered for high school students.  Additional free content is also offered for kids, families and students.

TAC passes cost $120 CAD and includes all OIAF events and screenings, talks and networking events.

Visit the festival website for more details. Single tickets or a package of 5 tickets are available for purchase for events throughout the entire festival at watch.animationfestival.ca.