Nextoons: The Nicktoons Film Festival concluded over the weekend with a screening of the top ten films in competition and the awarding of the $10,000 grand prize. French filmmaker Arthur de Pins took top honors for his toon short, La Révolution des Crabes (The Crab Revolution), beating out hundreds of other entries in this second season of the televised animation festival.
La Révolution des Crabes was voted best of the fest by a grand jury that included actor Mark Hamill (Star Wars), Avatar: The Last Airbender co-creators Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, director/animator Mike Gabriel (Lorenzo), 10-year-old cartoon connoisseur Noah Webb and feature storyboard artist and winner of the Producers’ Choice Award in the first Nicktoons Film Festival, Elizabeth Ito (Welcome to My Life). A release issued by Nicktoons notes, "All jury members agreed that the clever story about the life of crabs doomed to only travel in a straight line was a side-splitter. The simple plot, black-and-white format and straightforward animation add to the film’s undeniable charm."
The other big winner was The Naïve Man from Lolliland from California Institute of the Arts student J.G. Quintel. The short about a very gentile ambassador who totally loses his cool during a typically benign encounter won both the Producers’ Choice Award (an Apple G5 computer and a copy of Bauhaus Software’s Mirage) and the Nextoons Student Animator Award ($1,000 and a copy of SOFTIMAGE’s XSI|Foundation).
The top-ten competitors included Anthem from PSYOP of New York, Prey by Tom Kyzivat of Illinois, The Mousochist by John Dilworth of New York, Maestro by M. Toth Geza of Hungary, Betty by Rie Ito of New York, Oh, Dear by Jiwook Kim of Los Angeles, Farm Force from Dominic Carola and Paulo Alvarado of Florida and Fee Fi Fo Fum by Shane Swinnea of Illinois.
“Our second-season winners have established Nextoons: The Nicktoons Film Festival as the premiere electronic animation festival for independent animators and artists,” says Fred Seibert, exec director of the festival and president of Frederator Studios, which is a co-producer of Nextoons: The Nicktoons Film Festival. “Arthur de Pins and J.G. Quintel are the original talents to watch out for in the future.”
Sponsors and Friends of the Nextoons Festival include Bauhaus Software, SOFTIMAGE, the Ottawa International Animation Festival, Stash DVD Magazine, Toon Boom, Your Next Tee, Digital Tutors, Animation Magazine, Mighty Fine Inc. and DreamWorks Animation. More information can be found at www.nicktoons.com.