Beijing 2019

Dragon Ball Super: Broly – Beijing 2019

A planet destroyed, a powerful race reduced to nothing. After the devastation of Planet Vegeta, three Saiyans were scattered among the stars, destined for different fates. While two found a home on Earth, the third was raised with a burning desire for vengeance and developed an unbelievable power. And the time for revenge has come. Destinies collide in a battle that will shake the universe to its very core!

Goku is back to training hard so he can face the most powerful foes the universes have to offer, and Vegeta is keeping up right beside him. But when they suddenly find themselves against an unknown Saiyan, they discover a terrible, destructive force.

Beijing 2019, Chinese Theatrical Premiere

The Iron Giant 20th Anniversary Screening: Beijing 2019

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

This Magnificent Cake! : Beijing 2019

World Premiering at Cannes before appearing at the Annecy and Toronto International Film Festivals, This Magnificent Cake is a surreal new stop-motion anthology film. Through intimate stories of interconnected characters–many of which rotate in and around a mysterious, luxury hotel in late 19th Century colonial Africa—a greater story about European colonialism emerges. At times wickedly humorous, and at others brutal, the film is a fascinating exploration of a world both firmly placed in history but feels completely alien. If Lars Von Trier or David Lynch had the impetus to work with delicate wooly puppets they may have produced a similar cinematic project but the acclaimed directing duo Marc James Roels and Emma De Swaef have created something unique and unforgettable.

 

Appearing with This Magnificent Cake:

SOLAR WALK (Germany, Réka Bucsi, 2017)
ODD IS AN EGG (Portugal, Kristin Ulseth, 2016)
Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Ruben Brandt, Collector: Beijing 2019

Mamoru Hosoda Retrospective

The Boy and the Beast

The latest film from award-winning Japanese director Mamoru Hosoda (Summer Wars, Wolf Children): When Kyuta, a young orphan living on the streets of Shibuya, stumbles into a fantastic world of beasts, he’s takin in by Kumatetsu, a gruff, rough-around-the-edges warrior beast who’s been searching for the perfect apprentice.
Despite their constant bickering, Kyuta and Kumatetsu begin training together and slowly form a bond as surrogate father and son. But when a deep darkness threatens to throw the human and beast worlds into chaos, the strong bond between this unlikely pair will be put to the ultimate test – a final showdown that will only be won if the two can finally work together using all of their combined strength and courage.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Tito and the Birds: Beijing 2019

This gorgeous film from Brazil uses a mix of oil painting, line drawing, and computer animation to tell an imaginative children’s tale with potent political undertones. Tito loves helping his father with his inventions. But Tito’s mom, always a skeptic, worries that something will go terribly wrong. Their latest experiment is a machine that can understand birds – but when the contraption starts smoking and sparking, Tito is injured, and his mom decides that for Tito’s safety, his father must leave. Years later, people start falling ill and an epidemic begins to spread: the cause, Tito determines, is fear. Recalling his father’s research, Tito suspects that the cure must lie in understanding birdsong, and along with his friends Sarah and Buiú – and some help from the city’s pigeon population – he sets out to find his father and complete the research before it’s too late.

A Shout! Studios release

Mamoru Hosoda Retrospective

Wolf Children: Beijing 2019

Hana was a student before she was a mother. She was bright and pretty, and her future held endless possibilities. Then she met a man, who turned out to be a wolf, and together they built a family. Hana loved her mate fiercely, but fate took him from her, leaving her alone with two unusual kids she didn’t know how to raise. Frightened of being discovered, Hana and her wolf children fled to the countryside to build a new life. Raising her little wild things was an adventure. It left Hanna bruised, scratched, exhausted, and joyously overwhelmed as her pups grew stronger and wandered further every day. This is a mother’s journey. Teach your children to chase their dreams – and smile through the tears as they disappear into the world in search of who they will become. Hana wasn’t always a mother, but it was always what she was meant to be.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Penguin Highway: Beijing 2019

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Another Day of Life: Beijing 2019

One of two animated features selected for the 2018 Cannes lineup, Another Day of Life is a daringly ambitious dive into the chaos of war, based on the book by the journalist Ryszard “Ricardo” Kapuscinski, one of the world’s most compelling chroniclers of conflict. Intercutting a graphically bold animation style with interviews and archival footage, the visually striking film conveys a rare immediacy as it tells of the outbreak of civil war following Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975. Kapuscinski is portrayed as a reckless and square jawed Indiana Jones type, who against all advice is intent on driving south into the heart of the bloody conflict to find the isolated rebel leader Farrusco (a legendary figure like Kurtz in Heart of Darkness). His animated trip through corpse-strewn roads conveys an undeniable urgency, while the documentary testimony reminds us that we are watching actual history.

Mamoru Hosoda Retrospective

Summer Wars

Kenji is your typical teenage misfit. He’s good at math, bad with girls, and spends most of his time hanging out in the all-powerful online community known as OZ. His second life is the only life he has – until the girl of his dreams, Natsuki, hijacks him for a starring role as a fake fiancé at her family reunion. Things only get stranger from there. A late-night email containing a cryptic mathematic riddle leads to the unleashing of a rogue AI intent on using the virtual world of OZ to destroy the real world. As Armageddon looms on the horizon, Kenji and his new “family” set aside their differences and band together to save the worlds they inhabit in this “near perfect blend of social satire and science fiction.”

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

Chinese Premiere

Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles: Beijing 2019

Beijing 2019, Mamoru Hosoda Retrospective

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time: Beijing 2019

After waking up late, flunking her pop quiz, embarrassing herself on numerous occasions, and starting a fire in her home economics class, high school student Makoto Konno figures she’s just having one of those days. Just when she thinks she’s made it through, the brakes on her bike malfunction putting her on a collision course with a speeding train. The life-ending accident would have been the perfect end to the worst day ever, but the strangest thing happens – she leaps backwards in time.

After unlocking her new ability, Makoto does what any teenager would do. She re-takes tests, corrects embarrassing situations, and sleeps in as late as she wants, never thinking that her carefree time travelling could have a negative effect on the people she cares about. By the time she realizes the damage she’s done, she’ll have to race against time to set things right.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Modest Heroes: Ponoc Short Films Theatre, Volume 1: Beijing 2019

Beijing 2019, Chinese Premiere

Mirai: Beijing 2019

The latest from acclaimed director Mamoru Hosoda – whose The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Summer Wars, Wolf Children and Boy and the Beast are also playing the festival. Mirai is a daringly original story of love passed down through generations and brings together two of Hosoda’s most resonant themes: the importance of family and the ability to pass through time. When four-year-old Kun meets his new baby sister, his world is turned upside down. Named Mirai (meaning “future”), the baby quickly wins the hearts of Kun’s entire family. As his mother returns to work and his father struggles to Run the household, Kun becomes increasingly jealous of baby Mirai… until one day he storms off into the garden, where he encounters strange guests from the past and future – including his sister Mirai, as a teenager. Together, Kun and teenage Mirai go on a journey through time and space, uncovering their family’s incredible story. But why did Mirai come from the future?

An official selection at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, and the epic capstone of director Mamoru Hosoda’s career, Mirai is a sumptuous, magical, and emotionally soaring adventure about the ties that bring families together and make us who we are.

A GKIDS release

Eric Darnell

Eric Darnell is Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer of the Emmy award winning and leading VR animation studio Baobab Studios, whose mission is to inspire you to dream by bringing out your sense of wonder. Started by industry leaders Maureen Fan (Zynga VP of Games, Farmville Franchise), Eric Darnell (Director of all 4 Madagascar films), and Larry Cutler (Dreamworks’ Head of Character Tech, Pixar TD Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc, Oscar tech judge), the company’s Emmy-award winning VR animation, INVASION!, starring Ethan Hawke, launched to substantial critical acclaim and has become the top downloaded VR app. In a first, Hollywood is taking IP from VR to become a feature film: Roth Kirschenbaum Films (Maleficent, Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Huntsman) has signed on to adapt INVASION! into a big screen feature film “flattie”.

Baobab Studios first VR experience INVASION! garnered laurels from film festivals globally including Sundance, Toronto, Cannes and is currently a top ranking download on major VR platforms including Oculus, VIVE, PSVR, Samsung, Within, Hulu and others. Their follow up experience ASTEROIDS! starring Elizabeth Banks was an official 2017 selection for both Sundance and Cannes and recently won the “Outstanding Interactive Media” 2018 Daytime Emmy. Crow: The Legend, their most recent production, stars John Legend, Oprah Winfrey, Sarah Eagle Heart, Randy Edmonds, Liza Koshy, Tye Sheridan, Diego Luna, and Constance Wu and world premiered at the 2018 Venice International Film Festival.

Baobab was named Most Innovative Company for 2018 in the VR/AR category by Fast Company. Baobab has raised $31M to date making them one of the largest independent VR studios today. Baobab’s vision is to create experiences with the empathy of film, the agency of games, and ultimately the motivation of real life.

Eric’s career spans 25 years as a computer animation director, screenwriter, story artist, film director, and executive producer. He was the director and screenwriter on all four films in the “Madagascar” franchise, which together have grossed more than $2.5 billion at the box-office. He was also executive producer on “The Penguins of Madagascar.” Previously, Eric directed DreamWorks Animation’s very first animated feature film, “Antz,” which features the voices of Woody Allen, Gene Hackman, Christopher Walken, and Sharon Stone. Eric earned a degree in journalism from the University of Colorado and a master’s degree in experimental animation from The California Institute of the Arts.

Filmmaker Q&A, Free Event, World Premiere

Crow: The Legend

October 20, 2018 6:00 pm
Sold Out

Event will feature world premiere of the 2D version of the film, followed by the making of the film and Q&A with filmmakers.

This event is free to the public, but you must reserve seats to guarantee admission

Special Event

Best of Annecy Shorts for Kids

October 21, 2018 12:00 am
Hue BR
Goeblins, France, 2018, 1 min
A game of stickball requires some creative solutions once an overzealous batter loses the playing ball

Brooklyn Breeze
d’Alex Budovsky, USA, 2017, 4 min
A musical film and a visual journey through different parts of Brooklyn demonstrating some of the iconic spots and others not often seen by the visitors.

Link
Robert Lobel, Germany, 2017, 7:34 min
Two characters are linked by their hair. They influence each other with every move they make.

A Walk in the Woods
Hugo Frassetto, France/Belgium, 2017, 4:27 min
Five wolf cubs are playing in the woods and tease Daddy Wolf who is getting ready to go out and “eat them all up”! A musical take on a famous French children’s game.

Winds of Spring
Keyu Chen, Canada, 2017, 6 min
Unfolding with the rhythm of the seasons, this film tells the tender story of a young girl who, driven by the irrepressible need for self-fulfillment, decides to leave the family nest.

Colorbirds
Oana Lacroix, Switzerland, 2018, 6 min
In a large forest inhabited by single-colored birds, everyone has found their place on a tree. But what happens when a bird has two colours?

The Man with the Birds
Quentin Marcault, France, 2017, 4:30 min
The inhabitants of a mountain village cut off by snow await the arrival of the Man with the birds, which is the sign that winter is over.

Funny Fish
Krishna Chandran A. Nair, France, Switzerland, 2018, 6:21 min
In the middle of the ocean, a school of fish comes to the rescue of a red fish floating on the surface of the water. They try to do everything they can to help it, unaware that it’s in fact a balloon.

Muteum
Äggie Pak Yee Lee, Hong Kong/Estonia, 2017, 4 min
A teacher takes a group of mischievous children on a tour of an art gallery.

Ant
Julia Ocker, Germany, 2018, 4 min
The ants are working together perfectly. But there is one ant who is doing everything differently.

The Pig on the Hill
Jamy Whesless and John Helms, USA, 2017, 6 min
When Pig’s free-spirited and energetic new neighbour Duck plunges himself into Pig’s quiet, orderly life, Pig learns that having friends is what he has been missing all along.

Special Event

Best of Annecy Shorts

October 21, 2018 4:00 pm
Bom Dia Rio
Goeblins, France, 2018, 1min
In this special intro to the 2018 Annecy festival, we see snapshots of the everyday dramas, romances, trials and surprises within the daily life of Rio

Weekends
Trevor Jimenez, USA/Canada, 2017, 15:17 min
A small boy now has two different homes, his mom’s and his dad’s but it seems he spends a good amount of time being shuffled between the two. Weaving more surreal elements with gives the story a magical and poignant quality.

Hybrids
Florian Brauch, Matthieu Pujol, Kim Tailhades, Yohan Thireau, Romain Thirion, France, 2017, 6:22 min
When marine wildlife has to adapt to pollution, the food chain changes.

Egg
Martina Scarpelli, France/Denmark, 2018, 12 min
Have you considered food as a choice rather than a requirement? Have you ever considered your home as the ideal place to be ill in total security? Have you ever felt sexual pleasure when eating something? I have.

Biciklisti
Veljko Popovic, Croatia/France, 2018, 7:19 min
In a small town next to the sea in Croatia, the cycling season is at its peak. During the final race the two leaders are not just battling for the grand prize, but also for the affection of a lady and fulfillment of their erotic fantasy.

Inanimate
Lucia Bulgheroni, UK, 2018, 8 min
Katrine has a normal life, a normal job, a normal boyfriend and a normal apartment in a normal city. That’s what she thinks until one day everything starts falling apart.

Barbeque
Jenny Jokela, UK, 2018, 5:45 min
This film is a journey through the methods of coping with post traumatic stress disorder, and an exploration of shame and feelings of disembodiment.

Afterwork
Luis Usón, Andrés Aguilar, Ecuador/Spain/Peru, 2018, 6:15 min
We are all condemned to work and repeat again and again the same empty routines. Can we reach that carrot with which they want to keep us forever occupied, chasing eternally something we do not need?

Bloeistraat 11
Nienke Deutz, Belgium/The Netherlands, 2018, 10 min
Inseparable best friends spend their last summer holiday of childhood amusing themselves around the house. As summer progresses their bodies start to change and an awkwardness descends on the friends.

Pamela Ribon

Ribon was first tapped by directors John Musker and Ron Clements to work on Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Moana (2016). She also worked on Disneynature’s Bears (2014), scripting John C. Reilly’s narration. It was there she worked with Rich Moore and Jim Reardon—which ultimately led to her current assignment with Ralph Breaks the Internet.

In the comic book world, Ribon recently released two critically-acclaimed original graphic novels My Boyfriend is a Bear and Slam!, and penned issues of Rick and Morty for Oni Press. Her comedic memoir, Notes to Boys (And Other Things I Shouldn’t Share in Public), which dissects her lengthy love notes and awkward essays from her high school years, was called Brain-Breakingly Funny by NPR. Ribon previously served as a writer on Samantha Who? for ABC. She has published four novels: You Take It From Here, Going in Circles, Why Moms Are Weird and Why Girls Are Weird. She was a flagship contributor to Television Without Pity.

Ribon earned her BFA in acting from the University of Texas at Austin, where she also wrote, performed, and directed original material for Hyde Park Theatre, HBO’s Aspen Comedy Festival and the award-winning comedy troupe Monks’ Night Out.

She resides on the east side of Los Angeles. She is between pets.

Milorad Krstić

Ruben Brandt, Collector

Milorad Krstić is a Middle European artist who was born in Dornberk, Slovenia, in 1952. He took a degree in law at the University of Novi Sad, Serbia. Since 1989 he’s been living and working in Budapest, Hungary as a painter and multimedia artist. He immersed himself into different fields of visual art through painting, drawing, sculpting, documentary films, stage design, set design, photography, interactive CD-ROM, etc. For his first short animated film, My Baby Left Me, he was awarded with a Silver Bear in 1995 at the Berlin Film Festival. For his interactive CD ROM, Das Anatomische Theater, he won a MIFA award for The Best Interactive Project in Annecy, 1999.

Ruben Brandt, Collector

October 21, 2018 8:00 pm

Ruben Brandt, Collector

Milorad Krstić
Hungary · 2018 · 93 min
In English · Recommended for adult audiences

The world’s most renowned masterpieces are being swiped from museums around the world, paintings by Picasso, Van Gogh, Botticelli and more are being taken but it’s clear to all, especially Mike Kowalski, the detective on the case, that this is no ordinary thief.

Ruben Brandt is a famous but reclusive psychotherapist and his compulsion to steal the works runs deeper than petty theft. But in order to pull off these grand heists he needs the help of his patients-turned-henchmen (who are more adept than expected) to pull of high-speed chases, cunning trickery and masterful evasion.

With cubist character design and surrealist imagery, Ruben Brandt carries the artwork beyond the narrative and throughout the visual style of the film. Mixing high art with high action it’s an international caper-noir, unlike anything else you’ve seen.

A Sony Pictures Classics release

Marc James Roels

Bio TK

Emma de Swaef

Bio TK

Shin’ichirô Ushijima

Born in Fukuoka Prefecture. Affiliated to Studio VOLN. Studied abroad at a Los Angeles college majoring in design, and later joined Madhouse USA. After returning to Japan, his credits include Storyboard・Production for HUNTER×HUNTER (2011), Assistant Director for One Punch Man (2015) and All Out!! (2016). The animated film I Want to Eat Your Pancreas (2018) will be his first Directorial role.

André Catoto

Titi and the Birds

André Catoto was born in Rio de Janeiro. He is the director of the films Segredo (2008) and Say I am Only Seventeen (2015). Tito and the Birds (2018) is his first feature.

Gabriel Bitar

Tito and the Birds

Gabriel Bitar is an animator, painter, and photographer based in São Paulo. He has directed the short film The City and Desire Nº5 (2010). Tito and the Birds (2018) is his first feature film.

Gustavo Steinberg

Tito and the Birds

Gustavo Steinberg was born in São Paulo and works as a producer, screenwriter, and director. His films include End of the Line (2008). Tito and the Birds (2018) is his latest feature.

Juan Antin

Pachamama

Juan Antin was born in 1969 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He studied traditional animation and then continued his studies on 3D animation in Montreal, Canada.

Since 1998, he is in charge of the animation department at Universidad del Cine (Buenos Aires). He directed more than 70 animated films (shorts, TV series and video clips, using different techniques such as stop-motion, 2D, 3D and experimental animation.

His first feature film Mercano, The Martian (2002), was awarded in many festivals like Annecy, acclaimed by the international press and distributed in 20 countries across the world.

Damian Nenow

Joined Platige Image in 2005. Graduate of the National Film School in Lodz. Directed three short animations: The Aim (2005), The Great Escape (2006), and Paths of Hate (2010). The latter was screened at over 90 film festivals and ended up garnering 25 awards and honors. In 2011, he directed City of Ruins, an animated documentary commissioned by the Warsaw Uprising Museum. In 2013, he directed the Hunger Is a Tyrant commercial, commissioned for the UN Zero Hunger Challenge. On Another Day of Life, he’s responsible primarily for directing 3D animation.

Raúl De La Fuente

Another Day of Life
In 2015, Raúl de la Fuente’s film Minerita was shortlisted for the 88th Oscars© Academy Awards as Best Short Documentary Subject. The film won in 2014 the Goya Award, from the Spanish Cinema Academy. Minerita has been screened in more than 140 film festivals and has won 45 international prizes. His first feature film Nömadak TX was the most awarded Spanish documentary film in 2007 (17 prizes and more than 150 selections in film festivals).
As Ryszard Kapuscinki, the main character of the film, Raúl de la Fuente has travelled around the world in search for stories, directing films in India, Angola, Lapland, Sierra Leone, Algeria, Mongolia, Ethiopia, Venezuela, Peru, Cuba, Bolivia, Guatemala, Ecuador, Russia, Kazakhstan, Poland, Romania, USA, Canada, Qatar, UK, Switzerland, New Caledonia, Haiti, Benin, Colombia, Mozambique, Togo…

Hiroyasu Ishida

Born in Aichi Prefecture in 1988. Attended the school of art at Aichi Prefectural Asahigaoka High School. While he was there he began to produce animation, and in his second year he announced his first work Greeting of Love. He went on to study manga at Kyoto Seika University’s animation school in the department of manga. His 2009 self-produced Fumiko’s Confession became a hit for its sense of speed that sucked you in, as well as its incredible quality. It went on to win the 14th Ministry of Culture’s Media Arts Festival Animation Award, the 2010 Ottawa International Animation Festival Special Prize, and the 9th Tokyo Anime Award (Student Awards Division). His 2011 graduation work, rain town, won the 15th Ministry of Culture’s Media Arts Festival New Creator’s Animation Award, giving him the award two years in a row.

In 2013, he made his theatrical debut with Hinata no Aoshigure, in which he was director, scriptwriter, and animator. Despite its simple story, this movie became a hit for its fast pacing, and won the Special Judge’s Recommendation Award in the animation division of the 17th Ministry of Culture’s Media Arts Festival. In 2013 he created Paulette’s Chair, the 10th Special Animation for Fuji TV’s Noitamina.

This will be his first time directing a full-length movie.

Salvador Simó

Salvador Simo started working in traditional animation at Pegbar Studio, Barcelona, in 1991, painting cells and making Xerox copies. He then went on to study at the American Animation Institute in LA, taking an evening course for six months and working during the day as assistant animator at Bill Melendez Prod, on the Peanuts shows.

Upon returning to Spain, he started a career as freelance animator for several studios in Madrid and Barcelona, and a year later joined Disney Studios in Paris as assistant animator for the feature film Goofy & Max. Afterwards, he stayed in Paris to work as an artist for Disney’s department of Publishing and Consumer Products.

A year later, he went back to Barcelona while still working for Disney as a freelancer and created a small studio with Disney as main client for over four years. That allowed him to study directing at Barcelona’s CECC Film School, where he began to learn about 3D animation.

He directed a couple of animated shorts, the second supported by Open Workshop, in the Animation Workshop in Viborg (Denmark), and also taught for a year and a half.

He then decided to delve into the VFX world, joining the Revisualisation and Layout Department at MPC London, where he put to use his storytelling and cinematography skills in films such as Narnia, Prince Caspian, Wolfman, Prince of Persia, and James Bond, Skyfall, among others.

In 2008, he started directing a TV show in Bangkok for one season and eventually ended up doing 4 seasons of Max Adventures with more than 500 min of CG animation.

When he returned to Spain he directed some small projects and, in 2014, was asked by MPC to lead some sequences in the layout department for Disney’s new Jungle Book, which won the Oscar for Best VFX. After that, he collaborated with the team in MPC Montreal on Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Men Tell No Tales.

He was then commissioned to co-write and direct the film Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles, for which he moved back to Spain.

Denis Do

Nina Paley

Seder-Masochism

Nina Paley is the creator of the critically acclaimed animated musical feature film Sita Sings the Blues. Her adventures in our broken copyright system led her to join QuestionCopyright.org as Artist-in-Residence in 2008, where she produced a series of animated shorts about intellectual freedom called Minute MemesSeder-Masochism is her second feature.

Kitarô Kôsaka

Okko’s Inn

Born in 1962. Kosaka starts his career as an animator at Oh! Productions. After leaving the company on 1986, he has worked on many titles as the animation director and key animator for Studio Ghibli, such as Spirited Away, Grave of the Fireflies and Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind to name a few. He has also worked on many MADHOUSE productions, such as Yawara! and Master Keaton among others. He made his directorial debut with Nasu: Summer in Andalusia which was premiered at Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight in 2003. In 2014, Kosaka was awarded as Best Animator for Director Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises at Tokyo Anime Award Festival.

 

Mamoru Hosoda

Mamoru Hosoda was born in 1967 in Toyama. After graduating from Kanazawa College of Art, he joined Toei Doga studio (now Toei Animation Co, Ltd) and began his career as an animator.

In 1999, he directed his first 20 min. short film, Digimon Adventure, which was released in theaters.

In 2000, he directed a forty-minute sequel, Digimon Adventure: Our War Game!!!, and attracted critical attention thanks to his novel, cutting-edge style. He also introduced what would become recurring themes in his filmography. He became independent shortly afterwards and directed The Girl Who Leapt Through Time in 2006 (an adaptation of the well-known novella by Yasutaka Tsutsui). The film was met with great enthusiasm, and its success exceeded all expectations, remaining on Japanese screens for one year. It was then released in numerous countries, including France, where audiences discovered Hosada’s work on the big screen. In 2009, he directed his first original work: Summer Wars. The aesthetics of the film are reminiscent of those found in Digimon.

In 2011, with Yuichiro Saito (the producer who has accompanied him throughout his career), he created his own animation studio, Studio Chizu, and spearheaded a new movement in theatrical animations.

The studio’s first production, Wolf Children (2012), followed by The Boy & The Beast (2015), cemented Hosoda’s popularity in Japan and abroad, particularly in France.

The Boy and the Beast

Introduction by Mamoru Hosoda

The latest film from award-winning Japanese director Mamoru Hosoda (Summer Wars, Wolf Children): When Kyuta, a young orphan living on the streets of Shibuya, stumbles into a fantastic world of beasts, he’s takin in by Kumatetsu, a gruff, rough-around-the-edges warrior beast who’s been searching for the perfect apprentice.
Despite their constant bickering, Kyuta and Kumatetsu begin training together and slowly form a bond as surrogate father and son. But when a deep darkness threatens to throw the human and beast worlds into chaos, the strong bond between this unlikely pair will be put to the ultimate test – a final showdown that will only be won if the two can finally work together using all of their combined strength and courage.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

Anime, Mamoru Hosoda

The Boy and the Beast

Introduction by Mamoru Hosoda

The latest film from award-winning Japanese director Mamoru Hosoda (Summer Wars, Wolf Children): When Kyuta, a young orphan living on the streets of Shibuya, stumbles into a fantastic world of beasts, he’s takin in by Kumatetsu, a gruff, rough-around-the-edges warrior beast who’s been searching for the perfect apprentice.
Despite their constant bickering, Kyuta and Kumatetsu begin training together and slowly form a bond as surrogate father and son. But when a deep darkness threatens to throw the human and beast worlds into chaos, the strong bond between this unlikely pair will be put to the ultimate test – a final showdown that will only be won if the two can finally work together using all of their combined strength and courage.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

MAMORU HOSODA IN-PERSON

Wolf Children

October 21, 2018 4:30 pm

Q+A with Mamoru Hosoda

Anime, Mamoru Hosoda

Wolf Children

Mamoru Hosoda
Japan · 2012 · 117 min
In Japanese with English subtitles · Recommended for ages 8 and up

Hana was a student before she was a mother. She was bright and pretty, and her future held endless possibilities. Then she met a man, who turned out to be a wolf, and together they built a family. Hana loved her mate fiercely, but fate took him from her, leaving her alone with two unusual kids she didn’t know how to raise. Frightened of being discovered, Hana and her wolf children fled to the countryside to build a new life. Raising her little wild things was an adventure. It left Hanna bruised, scratched, exhausted, and joyously overwhelmed as her pups grew stronger and wandered further every day. This is a mother’s journey. Teach your children to chase their dreams – and smile through the tears as they disappear into the world in search of who they will become. Hana wasn’t always a mother, but it was always what she was meant to be.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

MAMORU HOSODA IN-PERSON

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

October 20, 2018 6:45 pm

Q+A with Mamoru Hosoda

Anime, Mamoru Hosoda

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

Mamoru Hosoda
Japan · 2006 · 99 min
In Japanese with English Subtitles · Recommended for ages 8 and up

After waking up late, flunking her pop quiz, embarrassing herself on numerous occasions, and starting a fire in her home economics class, high school student Makoto Konno figures she’s just having one of those days. Just when she thinks she’s made it through, the brakes on her bike malfunction putting her on a collision course with a speeding train. The life-ending accident would have been the perfect end to the worst day ever, but the strangest thing happens – she leaps backwards in time.

After unlocking her new ability, Makoto does what any teenager would do. She re-takes tests, corrects embarrassing situations, and sleeps in as late as she wants, never thinking that her carefree time travelling could have a negative effect on the people she cares about. By the time she realizes the damage she’s done, she’ll have to race against time to set things right.

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment

MAMORU HOSODA IN-PERSON

Summer Wars

October 20, 2018 9:30 pm

Introduction by Mamoru Hosoda

Anime, Mamoru Hosoda

Summer Wars

Kenji is your typical teenage misfit. He’s good at math, bad with girls, and spends most of his time hanging out in the all-powerful online community known as OZ. His second life is the only life he has – until the girl of his dreams, Natsuki, hijacks him for a starring role as a fake fiancé at her family reunion. Things only get stranger from there. A late-night email containing a cryptic mathematic riddle leads to the unleashing of a rogue AI intent on using the virtual world of OZ to destroy the real world. As Armageddon looms on the horizon, Kenji and his new “family” set aside their differences and band together to save the worlds they inhabit in this “near perfect blend of social satire and science fiction.”

Courtesy of Funimation Entertainment


Related Events

Filmmaker Q&A, Special Event

Ralph Breaks the Internet: Behind the Scenes

October 20, 2018 11:00 am
Sold Out

Q+A with the Filmmakers

Get a sneak peak at new scenes of the eagerly anticipated sequel to the 2012 smash hit Wreck it Ralph, and an exclusive look at the making of the film. Hear from one of the creators herself, writer Pamela Ribon, as she takes you reveals how they brought the famously analog Ralph into the digital era.

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Pamela Ribon
U.S.
In English

Q+A with the Filmmakers

In this new film, Ralph leaves behind the world of arcade games to venture into the limitless world of the Internet. Will the web survive his legendary talent as a demolisher?

Accompanied by his friend Vanellope von Schweetz, he will have to embark on an adventure in the strange world of the Internet in the search for a replacement part for the electric terminal of Sugar Rush, the video game where Vanellope lives. Way out of their depth in the world around them, they will call upon the help of the inhabitants of the Internet, called the Netizens, to help navigate their way, and in particular Yesss, who is the heart and soul of the trend-making site BuzzzTube…

Intro and Q+A with Filmmakers, Special Event

The Prince of Egypt

October 21, 2018 1:15 pm
Sold Out

Introduction and Q+A with directors Brenda Chapman, Steve Hickner, Simon Wells and producers Sandra Rabins and Penney Finkleman Cox

The Prince of Egypt

USA · 1998 · 99 min
In English · Recommended for all ages

Twenty years ago, for its inaugural production, the then fledgling DreamWorks Animation adapted arguably the most famous story in history. And the rest is history. Based on the Book of Exodus, The Prince of Egypt tells the story of Moses (Val Kilmer), adopted son of the Pharaoh, who upon learning his true identity, leads his people out of slavery, against the will of his brother Rameses (Ralph Fiennes). Utilizing a crew of over 350 artists, the film pioneered the marriage of traditional “hand drawn” work with state-of-the-art computer animation (the latter, most notably, in the astonishing parting of the Red Sea sequence) to create a work worthy of its aspirations. Preceding the Academy’s Best Animated Feature category by three years, the film did pick up an Oscar for Best Song (“When You Believe”), the first for the company.

Animation Is Film is proud to present a 20th anniversary celebration of the film and the company that made it, with a great many of the original DreamWorks artists expected to be in attendance.

Brenda Chapman, Steve Hickner, & Simon Wells


Related Events

Anime

I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

Shin’ichirô Ushijima
Japan · 108 min
In Japanese with English Subtitles · Recommended for ages 10 and up

Since Yoru Sumino posted his novel online in 2014, it has spawned a manga adaptation, a hit live action film, and now an animated feature. It’s no wonder, because this heart-melting story will surely move you to tears. This is the tale of a burgeoning teenage romance between two high school classmates on opposite ends of the popularity spectrum. The un-named protagonist is a socially awkward librarian who can’t hold eye contact. He finds the diary of a girl, Sakura, and discovers she only has a few months left to live. Despite her illness, Sakura has an optimistic disposition – she may be dying, but she is not throwing in the towel and wants to hit as many highs as possible in the time she has left. A cheerful dying girl teaching a mopey boy how to live may not be new (think Harold and Maude) but it is easy to buy into their blossoming love, and when things get messy you can’t help rooting for them. Ultimately the film tells a universal story about friendship, and treasuring each moment of the precious time we have together in this world.


Related Events

North American Premiere

I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

October 21, 2018 11:00 am
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This Magnificent Cake!

Emma de Swaef · Marc James Roels
Belgium · 2018 · 60 min
In French and Dutch with English subtitles · Recommended for ages 12 and up

World Premiering at Cannes before appearing at the Annecy and Toronto International Film Festivals, This Magnificent Cake is a surreal new stop-motion anthology film. Through intimate stories of interconnected characters–many of which rotate in and around a mysterious, luxury hotel in late 19th Century colonial Africa—a greater story about European colonialism emerges. At times wickedly humorous, and at others brutal, the film is a fascinating exploration of a world both firmly placed in history but feels completely alien. If Lars Von Trier or David Lynch had the impetus to work with delicate wooly puppets they may have produced a similar cinematic project but the acclaimed directing duo Marc James Roels and Emma De Swaef have created something unique and unforgettable.


Related Events

Director Q&A, Special Event

This Magnificent Cake!

October 20, 2018 1:30 pm

Q+A with director Marc James Roels


The Burden will screen prior to This Magnificent Cake.
Niki Lindroth von Bahr, Sweden, 2017, 13min
In Swedish with English subtitles

An animated musical with apocalyptic undertones. The story is divided into four episodes that takes place in a supermarket, a long term hotel, a call center and a hamburger restaurant. All of the settings are located in a modern, generic market place next to a large freeway.

Filmmaker Q&A, Special Event, World Premiere

Modest Heroes: Ponoc Short Films Theatre, Volume 1

October 20, 2018 4:15 pm

Q+A with producer Yoshiaki Nishimura

Filmmaker Q&A, Special Event

Behind the Scenes: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

October 21, 2018 11:00 am
Sold Out

Q+A with the Filmmakers

Be the first to see exclusive extended footage from the upcoming animated Spidey movie! Key members of the creative team will show how the radical visual approach to the new film was developed, with artists striving to bring the graphic ink and pen look of comic books to state-of-the-art CGI using methods and technologies never employed before. The workshop will take the audience through numerous deconstructed scenes to show step-by-step and layer-by-layer how the characters, backgrounds, and environments were created and set in motion.

Tito and the Birds

Gabriel Bitar · André Catoto · Gustavo Steinberg
Brazil · 2018 · 73 min
In Portuguese with English subtitles · Recommended for ages 7 and up

This gorgeous film from Brazil uses a mix of oil painting, line drawing, and computer animation to tell an imaginative children’s tale with potent political undertones. Tito loves helping his father with his inventions. But Tito’s mom, always a skeptic, worries that something will go terribly wrong. Their latest experiment is a machine that can understand birds – but when the contraption starts smoking and sparking, Tito is injured, and his mom decides that for Tito’s safety, his father must leave. Years later, people start falling ill and an epidemic begins to spread: the cause, Tito determines, is fear. Recalling his father’s research, Tito suspects that the cure must lie in understanding birdsong, and along with his friends Sarah and Buiú – and some help from the city’s pigeon population – he sets out to find his father and complete the research before it’s too late.

A Shout! Studios release

Filmmaker Q&A, US Premiere

Tito and the Birds

October 21, 2018 4:30 pm

Q+A with Filmmaker

Pachamama

Juan Antin
Argentina/France · 2018 · 72 min
In French

Academy Award-nominated Didier Brunner, producer of Triplets of Belleville, The Secret of Kells, and Ernest & Celestine, brings us a richly textured children’s fable set in an Andean village at the edge of the vast Incan empire. Tepulpaï is a mischievous 10-year-old who dreams of becoming a shaman. As the villagers are gathering to make an offering to their great spirit Pachamama, the ceremony is disrupted by an Incan overlord, who confiscates the town’s golden statue. Tepulpaï, sees the chance to show his metal and sets off to recapture the irreplaceable treasure, joined, whether he likes it or not, by his friend Naira and her smart-talking pet llama. Together they make a journey across uncharted lands, full of unknown obstacles and dangers. And meanwhile the Spanish have invaded with guns in search of gold! Pachamama’s dark, soft hues draw on the palette of the high forests of the Andean altiplano, while the soundtrack features pre-Columbian music performed using ancient water flutes, tambourin, and condor feathers.


Related Events

Director Q&A, World Premiere

Pachamama

October 20, 2018 11:00 am

Q+A with director Juan Antin

Another Day of Life

Raúl De La Fuente · Damian Nenow
Poland/Spain/Germany/Belgium/Hungary · 2018 · 86 min
In English, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish · Recommended for ages 14 and up

One of two animated features selected for the 2018 Cannes lineup, Another Day of Life is a daringly ambitious dive into the chaos of war, based on the book by the journalist Ryszard “Ricardo” Kapuscinski, one of the world’s most compelling chroniclers of conflict.

Intercutting a graphically bold animation style with interviews and archival footage, the visually striking film conveys a rare immediacy as it tells of the outbreak of civil war following Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975. Kapuscinski is portrayed as a reckless and square jawed Indiana Jones type, who against all advice is intent on driving south into the heart of the bloody conflict to find the isolated rebel leader Farrusco (a legendary figure like Kurtz in Heart of Darkness). His animated trip through corpse-strewn roads conveys an undeniable urgency, while the documentary testimony reminds us that we are watching actual history.


Related Events

US Premiere

Another Day of Life

October 20, 2018 9:30 pm
Anime

Penguin Highway

Hiroyasu Ishida
Japan · 2018 · 118 min
In Japanese with English Subtitles

It’s hard not to love this brightly colored, fantastical, sci-fi adventure, where any number of insanely cute penguins mysteriously begin to appear in a quiet suburban neighborhood. Aoyama is a brainy fourth-grader. Obsessed with experimentation, he is counting down the 4,000 days to his first Nobel prize. He also has a crush on young dental hygienist, or more specifically, an infatuation with her boobs – why do they make him feel different then his mother’s do? (Actually, Aoyama might just be a tad on the spectrum, which would make this more innocent than lecherous. Without social awareness, he is just applying the scientific method to own pre-adolescent hormonal sensations.) It turns out that the dental assistant may have something to do with the penguins, which have been the focus of Aoyama’s most recent research. Meanwhile, his classmate Hamamoto has stumbled upon a discovery of her own. Deep in the forest is a suspended orb of water she’s coined “The Ocean.” Just as the kids begin to uncover the cosmic connection between penguins and the orb, a team of government scientists threaten to ruin everything and plunge the world into disaster.

An ELEVEN ARTS Anime Studio release

LA Premiere

Penguin Highway

October 21, 2018 1:15 pm

Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles

Salvador Simó
Spain · 2018 · 77 min
In Spanish with English subtitles

In a stranger-than-fiction tale befitting the master surrealist filmmaker, Buñuel and the Labyrinth of the Turtles tells the true story of how Buñuel made his second movie.

Paris, 1930. Salvador Dalí and Luis Buñuel are main figures of the Surrealist movement, but Buñuel is left penniless after a scandal surrounding his first film L’Age d’Or. However, his good friend, the sculptor Ramón Acín, buys a lottery ticket with the promise that, if he wins, he will pay for his next film. Incredibly, luck is on their side, the ticket is a winner and so they set out to make the movie.

Both a buddy adventure and fascinating episode of cinematic history, Buñuel and the Labyrinth of the Turtles utilizes sensitive performances as well as excerpts of Buñuel’s own footage from the production, to present a deeply affecting and humanistic portrait of an artist hunting for his purpose.

Recommended for ages 12 and up

Director Q&A, World Premiere

Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles

October 20, 2018 6:45 pm

Q+A with director Salvador Simó

Anime

Okko’s Inn

Kitarô Kôsaka
Japan · 2018 · 94 min
In Japanese with English Subtitles · Recommended for ages 7 and up

After losing her parents in a car accident, Okko goes to live in the countryside with her grandmother, who runs a traditional Japanese inn built on top of an ancient spring said to have healing waters. While she goes about her chores and prepares to become the inn’s next caretaker, Okko discovers there are ghosts who live there that only she can see – not scary ghosts, but playful child ghosts who keep her company and help her feel less lonely. A sign outside says the spring welcomes all and will reject none, and this is soon put to the test as a string of new guests challenge Okko’s ability to be a gracious host. But ultimately Okko discovers that dedicating herself to the happiness of others becomes the key to taking care of herself. The latest feature from famed animation house Madhouse (home to Satoshi Kon and the early Mamoru Hosoda) is a beguilingly simple children’s tale that sneaks up on you with a deepfelt message of hope and acceptance.


Related Events

North American Premiere

Okko’s Inn

October 20, 2018 1:30 pm
Filmmaker Q&A, North American Premiere

Funan

October 20, 2018 4:15 pm

Q+A with director Denis Do and producer Sebastien Onomo

Funan

Denis Do
France/Luxembourg/Belgium · 2018 · 84 min
In French with English Subtitles · Recommended for ages 12 and up

Winner of the Cristal, the highest award at Annecy Animation Festival, Funan is a powerful and beautiful story of a young mother’s determination to hold on to her family during unspeakably trying times.

During the Khmer Rouge madness of the 1970s in Phnom Penh, young Chou’s world is upended when the population is deported to work camps and she becomes separated from her 4-year-old son. Working in the fields day and night while living in squalor, Chou and the people in her camp are reduced to slave status, fighting for scraps of food and doing whatever they can to survive. With reality becoming grimmer by the day, Chou remains steadfast in her determination to find her son and reunite her family – even if it means risking everything.

Stunningly art directed by Michael Crouzat (key animator on Despicable Me) the sweeping immensity and beauty of the Cambodian landscape serves as poignant backdrop to the heartrending cruelty Chou faces, while prompting the question, can this be real? Featuring nuanced performances by acclaimed French actors Bérénice Bejo and Louis Garrel.


Related Events

Director Q&A, US Premiere

Mirai: Screening #1

October 19, 2018 7:00 pm
Sold Out

OPENING NIGHT FILM
Q+A with director Mamoru Hosoda

AIF 2018 opens with the latest from acclaimed director Mamoru Hosoda – whose The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Summer Wars, Wolf Children and Boy and the Beast are also playing the festival. Mirai is a daringly original story of love passed down through generations and brings together two of Hosoda’s most resonant themes: the importance of family and the ability to pass through time. When four-year-old Kun meets his new baby sister, his world is turned upside down. Named Mirai (meaning “future”), the baby quickly wins the hearts of Kun’s entire family. As his mother returns to work and his father struggles to Run the household, Kun becomes increasingly jealous of baby Mirai… until one day he storms off into the garden, where he encounters strange guests from the past and future – including his sister Mirai, as a teenager. Together, Kun and teenage Mirai go on a journey through time and space, uncovering their family’s incredible story. But why did Mirai come from the future?

An official selection at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, and the epic capstone of director Mamoru Hosoda’s career, Mirai is a sumptuous, magical, and emotionally soaring adventure about the ties that bring families together and make us who we are.

A GKIDS release

Director Q&A, US Premiere

Mirai: Screening #2

October 19, 2018 7:30 pm
Sold Out

OPENING NIGHT FILM
Q+A w/director Mamoru Hosoda

In Japanese with English Subtitles

AIF 2018 opens with the latest from acclaimed director Mamoru Hosoda – whose The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Summer Wars, Wolf Children and Boy and the Beast are also playing the festival.

Director Q&A, LA Premiere

Seder-Masochism

October 19, 2018 9:30 pm

Q+A with director Nina Paley

Seder-Masochism

Back in 2008 the brilliant and irrepressible Nina Paley blessed the world with her one-woman masterpiece Sita Sings the Blues, one of the most enjoyable and best-reviewed films of all time (if you haven’t seen it, download it for free now – like all her works Nina dedicated Sita to the public under a Creative Commons license).

Ten years later she is back with the playful, irreverent, politico-feminist Seder-Masochism, a musical retelling of the old testament Exodus that is provocative on oh-so-many levels. The film is a no-holds-barred takedown of patriarchal religion and the suppression of pluralistic female fertility goddesses in favor of a violent, wrathful, misogynist, monotheist deity – but done in a cheeky Busby Berkeley-style, with singing Moses, Pharaoh, and Angel of Death belting out hits from Gloria Gaynor to Led Zeppelin to the Beatles. Some will be offended, the rest of us will sing along in giddy merriment.


Related Events

Henry Selick

Henry Selick is best known as the writer/director of the Oscar-nominated stop-motion animated feature Coraline, as well as the director of James and the Giant Peach and The Nightmare Before Christmas. While he has made films using hand-drawn, cut-out and C.G. animation and live-action, his favorite medium is stop-motion where he has collaborated with some of the best animators, designers, story artists, fabricators, lighters and musicians in the world. Selick was the first to shoot a stop-motion feature in 3D, the first to use rapid prototype/3D printers to create facial expressions, and, with Tim Burton, the first to make stop-motion feature filmmaking a viable enterprise. He is currently writing and directing a new stop-motion feature with acclaimed filmmaker Jordan Peele called Wendell & Wild. Many have begged Selick to retire from showbiz but Selick continues to press on.

Jennifer Yuh Nelson

Jennifer Yuh Nelson made her feature film directorial debut with Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), which earned more than $665 million at the worldwide box-office. She continued on to direct the franchise’s successful follow-up Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016). Nelson has lent her talents to a variety of DreamWorks Animation pictures, including as head of story for Kung Fu Panda (2008), and story artist on Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002) and Madagascar (2005). Prior to joining DreamWorks Animation, Nelson worked at HBO Animation and served as director, story artist and character designer for HBO’s animated series Spawn, which won an Emmy Award in 1999 for Outstanding Animated Program. She also worked as an illustrator and story artist for the live action film Dark City (1998) for Mystery Clock Productions. She made her live action directing debut with The Darkest Minds (2018), for Twentieth Century Fox. She is currently developing properties both in animation and live action.

Dean DeBlois

Golden Globe® winner and two-time Academy Award® nominee Dean DeBlois is best known for writing, directing, and executive producing 2010’s How To Train Your Dragon and its 2014 sequel. He is currently reprising those roles on How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019), the final installment of the trilogy and culmination of one of the most popular animated franchises in film history. Prior to collaborating on the original How to Train Your Dragon with Chris Sanders, the pair wrote and directed Walt Disney Animation Studios’ beloved Lilo & Stitch (2002), after first serving as co-heads of story on Mulan (1998).

In addition to his animation work, Dean has also written and sold various live action feature film projects to Disney and Universal Studios. He has also directed several music films and documentaries, most notably 2007’s indie critical darling Sigur Rós: Heima. Dean’s continued collaboration with Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi has lead to the singer-songwriter’s contributions to the How to Train Your Dragon soundtracks.

Born and raised in Canada, Dean’s career began at Hinton Animation Studios in his hometown of Ottawa. In 1990, he joined the Don Bluth Studios in Ireland before heading to the US to begin work for Walt Disney Feature Animation in 1994. He joined DreamWorks Animation in 2008. He is a graduate of Sheridan College’s animation program and was awarded an honorary degree in 2016. Dean is a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, The Writers Guild, and ASIFA.

Melissa Cobb

Melissa Cobb is Vice President, Kids and Family at Netflix, the world’s leading internet entertainment service. Cobb leads the content team responsible for bringing kids and family titles, both live-action and animated, to Netflix members in 190 countries around the world. Prior to Netflix, Cobb was Chief Creative Officer for Oriental DreamWorks, where she oversaw development and production, business strategy, production strategy and more for a slate of high-quality animated feature films targeted to a global audience. She also served as a producer at DreamWorks Animation, responsible for animated feature films, including the Academy Award-nominated Kung Fu Panda trilogy. Before joining DreamWorks, Cobb was at 20th Century Fox Feature Animation (Titan A.E. and Ever After) and Walt Disney Pictures, where she was responsible for discovering and developing live-action titles. Cobb earned an M.B.A. from the Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA and a Bachelor of Science from Stanford University.

Director Q&A, West Coast Premiere

Mutafukaz

October 21, 2017 7:00 pm
Sold Out

Yoshiaki Nishimura

Born in Tokyo, 1977. Founder, Studio Ponoc. In 2002, Nishimura joined Studio Ghibli after returning from his studies in the United States. He was involved in the promotions of Howl’s Moving Castle (2002), Tales from Earthsea (2006) and Ponyo (2008).

He was the Advertising Producer of Le Roi et l’Oiseau (The King and the Mockingbird) and Cheburashka, two foreign animated films distributed domestically by Studio Ghibli in 2006 and 2008 respectively.

He received an Academy Award® nomination for his first feature film as a producer, The Tale of The Princess Kaguya (2013), directed by Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata. The Academy Award®-nominated When Marnie Was There was the second film for Nishimura, in which he reprised his role as producer. In 2017 his new studio, Studio Ponoc, released Mary and The Witch’s Flower, directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi.

Anne Thompson

Born and raised in New York, IndieWire Editor at Large Anne Thompson has been a contributor to the New York Times, Washington Post, The Observer, and Wired. She has served as film columnist at Variety, and deputy editor of Variety.com, where her daily blog, “Thompson on Hollywood,” launched in March 2007. Anne was the Deputy Film Editor at The Hollywood Reporter, the West Coast Editor of Premiere, a Senior Writer at Entertainment Weekly, and West Coast Editor for Film Comment. She wrote the film industry column “Risky Business” for L.A. Weekly and the Los Angeles Times syndicate. A graduate of the Department of Cinema Studies at New York University, she has taught film criticism at USC and hosts the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.

Carolyn Giardina

Carolyn Giardina is Tech Editor at The Hollywood Reporter and writes its Behind the Screen blog. Her work as an editor, reporter or columnist has also appeared in titles such as CinemaEditor, SHOOT, British Cinematographer and SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal . She’s co-author of Exploring 3D: The New Grammar of Stereoscopic Filmmaking (Focal Press, 2012). In 2015, Carolyn was presented American Cinema Editors’ Robert Wise Award, which recognizes a journalist for contributions to film editing. She was the 2011 recipient of the International Cinematographers Guild’s Technicolor William A. Fraker Award for journalistic contributions to cinematography.

Peter Debruge

Variety’s Chief International Film Critic, Peter is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin’s film studies program. Prior to Variety, he spent four years working as an editor for AOL Moviefone. In addition to hundreds of reviews for the Austin Chronicle, Miami Herald and Premiere, his writing on film has appeared in Entertainment Weekly, Life, Creative Screenwriting, Backstory and IndieWire. Peter also contributed to the book Variety’s The Movie That Changed My Life.

Mabel Tam

Mabel Tam is VP/Head Film Buyer of LANDMARK THEATRES. Landmark Theatres is the nation’s largest theatre chain dedicated to exhibiting and marketing independent film. A 16 year veteran of the entertainment industry, she is a graduate of UCLA and resides in LA with her family.

Jorge R. Gutiérrez

Jorge R. Gutiérrez is a painter, writer and director born in Mexico City and raised in Tijuana. Gutierrez has completed various films, cartoons, and paintings exploring his love of Mexican pop and folk culture. He and his wife Sandra Equihua created the multiple Emmy Award-winning animated television series, “El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera” for Nickelodeon, and he most recently co-wrote and directed “The Book of Life” for Reel FX and 20th Century Fox, which was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Feature Film

Charles Solomon

An internationally respected critic and historian of animation, Charles Solomon has written on the subject for the New York Times, Newsweek (Japan), Rolling Stone, the Los Angeles Times, The International Herald Tribune, Variety, the Manchester Guardian, and National Public Radio. His books include “The Art of Frozen,” “The Art of the Disney Golden Books,” “The Toy Story Films: An Animated Journey,” “Tale as Old as Time: The Art and Making of Disney’s Animated Classic Beauty and the Beast,” “The Art of Toy Story 3,” “Enchanted Drawings: The History of Animation,” which was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and the first film book to be nominated for a National Book Critics’Circle Award. In 2008, he received the LA Press Club Award for radio feature reporting. In 2015, AISFA/Hollywood’s June Foray for service to the art of animation.

Allison Abbate

Allison Abbate is an executive vice president at Warner Animation Group (WAG), a division of Warner Bros. Entertainment. Prior to assuming her post at WAG, Abbate was an executive producer on the global blockbuster The LEGO® Movie, written and directed by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord; and a producer on Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie and Corpse Bride, Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Brad Bird’s directorial debut, Iron Giant.

The many honors earned by The LEGO Movie include a BAFTA Award, New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC) Award for Best Animated Feature, a Golden Globe nomination, and placing second in the balloting from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA). Corpse Bride was nominated for an Oscar and BAFTA Award; Fantastic Mr. Fox earned Oscar, BAFTA Award and Golden Globe nominations, and won the NYFCC’s and LAFCA’s Awards for Best Animated Feature; and Abbate earned a BAFTA Award for The Iron Giant.

Her additional credits include producing the animation for Looney Tunes: Back in Action, co-producing the Academy Award-nominated Mickey Mouse short Runaway Brain, and co-producing Space Jam, which broke new ground by combining classic animated Warner Bros. characters with live action sequences.

Abbate began her career working on several of Disney’s most beloved animated films, including The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, The Rescuers Down Under and Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas.

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