For a while, it looked as though the Ottawa International Animation Festival might become a thing of the past. Yesterday brought word that Telefilm Canada is resuming its funding of the event at least one more year.
In a June 16th letter from Telefilm Canada’s Director of Communications and Public Affairs, Danielle Dansereau, OIAF organizers were told that Telefilm is "in a position to only support events that are primarily focused on screening feature films that are destined for wide distribution."
When word leaked to the industry, animators from around the world flooded the festival office with letters of support. Canadian animation companies such as Funbag, Head Gear, Bardel Animation and Atomic Cartoons wrote in to protest, as did representatives from U.S. studios such as Klasky Csupo, Pixar, Warner Brothers, DreamWorks and Disney.
After listening to the animation industry and local retailers who would be affected by the loss of the festival, Telefilm Canada plans to conduct more in-depth evaluation and consultations in the fall before coming to a final decision.
Companies are already getting on board to contribute funding, but organizers are still seeking corporate partners to help with both the Student festival and the Ottawa International Animation Festival.