Ark, Dreammaker, En Tus Brazos Nab SIGGRAPH ’07 Honors

Grzegorz Jonkajtys and Marcin Kobylecki’s CG-animated eye-popper Ark, Leszek Plichta’s Dreammaker and Supinfocom students Francois-Xavier Goby, Edouard Jouret and Matthieu Landour’s En Tus Brazos have been selected as the three top prize-winners for this year’s SIGGRAPH festival in San Diego (August 5-9), it was announced today.

The Computer Animation Festival jury selected three award winners from a record-breaking 905 entries for exemplary use of computer-generated imagery, animation, and storytelling. For the first time in the history of SIGGRAPH, two of the award-winning films are student entries. In all, 134 pieces were selected for the Computer Animation Festival. Since 1999, the SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival has also been an official qualifying festival for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Animated Short Film award.

“This year’s winners are perfect examples of how computer graphics is enabling small, independent groups to create films with vast landscapes, complex characters, and amazing visuals,” comments Paul Debevec, SIGGRAPH 2007 Computer Animation Festival Chair from the University of Southern California’s Institute for Creative Technologies. “Just as computer graphics blurs the line between real and virtual, each of these films in its unique way explores what is tangible and what is imaginary and whether that difference is important.”

According to Debevec, 2007 marks the first time that filmmakers were able to submit high definition video to the selection jury, which greatly increased the jury’s ability to appreciate the intricacy of each film. “The winning films are not cartoons where scissors dance with staplers, but films with credible human characters who find love, suffer loss, and face their mortality, leaving a profound emotional impact on the audience,” he adds.

The Best of Show prize went to Ark, a CG-animated film by Polish

Grzegorz Jonkajtys and Marcin Kobylecki. Already selected as a contender at the Cannes Festival next month, the short is set against a dark future in which an unknown virus has destroyed almost the entire human population.

Dreammaker by Leszek Plichta, a student at Germany’s Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg, is the recipient of the festival’s Jury Honor. The short tells the story of a talented dreammaker who has chosen to focus on only one purpose’the creation of a special dream for himself.

Supinfocom Valenciennes students Fran’ois-Xavier Goby, Edouard Jouret, Matthieu Landour will be receiving the show’s Award of Excellence for their En Tus Brazos (In Your Arms). Their short tells the remarkable tale of the greatest tango dancer of the 1920′s who finds himself confined to a wheelchair after an unfortunate accident.

For complete details on SIGGRAPH 2007, visit www.siggraph.org/s2007.