France’s Annecy animation festival (June 12-17) and MIFA market (June 13-16) is just around the corner, and this year’s event highlights are jelling nicely. 2017 will welcome the first-ever MIFA Campus, headlined by Guillermo del Toro — plus all the on-site professional conferences and traditional meetings at the Imperial Palace. Organizers have also named two illustrious Personality of the Year awardees, special press conferences and the first ever Women in Animation World Summit.
For the 1st MIFA Campus on June 13, dedicated to students and entry-level professionals, patron Guillermo del Toro will present a “Conversation” at 2 p.m. (Verdi A&B). Ice Age and Rio director Carlos Saldanha will also share his experience with the next generation at 9 a.m. (Tente imperiale). The day will also feature Chat With sessions (Walt Disney Animation Studios: An Interactive Portfolio Workshop; Join the Force with ILM Recruitment; The Folimage Studio), Workshops including “Getting Hired and Staying Hired in Animation/VFX Studios” and “Before the Animation Begins: Getting the Characters Ready to Act”; and several new initiative feedback sessions about training programs and talent incubators in France and abroad.
The 2017 MIFA & Variety’s Animation Personality of the Year Award will be presented to both Marc Bonny, President of French distribution company Gebeka Films, and Eric Beckman, CEO of American distributor GKIDS. The dual honors will celebrate their respective careers and salute their mutual commitments to distributing independent films, which for example saw both execs spearhead the national and international theatrical expansion of My Life as a Zucchini.
Lots of exciting developments will be details at the press conferences being held throughout the week, by TeamTO (unveiling a new 3D animation school), Disney Television Animation (with Hélène Etzi, Eric Coleman and Orion Ross), France Televisions, the Syndicate of Animation Film Producers, Lagardere Active and Les Espoirs de l’Animation, and Canal+ Family.
This year will also present the very first Women in Animation World Summit, which is set for Monday, June 12 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Rotonde de l’Europe. The international event is being presented by US-based Women in Animation and France’s Les Femmes s’Animent, together with Walt Disney Animation Studios, the Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC), the Société des auteurs et compositeurs dramatiques (SACD) and Hiventy.