Ottawa Sets Four-Part Focus on Indie Anime

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The Ottawa International Animation Festival will showcase the famous works of Japanese best animators in a special four-part program.

The festival, set for Oct. 20-24, announced plans for “Time Out of Mind,” an extensive four-part program spotlighting the best independent animation.

Highlights of the program include:

• The Oscar-nominated film Mt. Head, by Koji Yamamura, a traditional Japanese film about a comical plump man with a “waste-not-want-not” attitude.
• The Magic Ballad by Tadanari Okamoto, a story about a magic fox;
• Demon, by Kihachiro Kawamoto, based on a 12th-century Japanese medieval legend about a pair of hunters.
• LOVE, by Yoji Kuri, a short experimental cartoon about a woman obsessively chasing after a man.

“These Japanese films, often referred to as ‘indie’ animation, are high quality works created by independent animators who have successfully built a loyal and international base of followers,” said OIAF artistic director Chris Robinson. “We want to honor these independent animators and hope that audiences will gain a deeper appreciation for the brilliancy of their works.”

The four-part program is divided into the following segments:

• War and Peace: The Genius of Osamu Tezuka
• You Need To Be Alone Sometimes: Private struggles of Japanese indies (Part 1 & Part 2), a survey of contemporary indie Japanese films.
• Handsoaps and Fools: The films of Atsushi Wada and Kei Oyama.

The program is presented in collaboration with the embassy of Japan and the Japan Foundation. The program is also based on Robinson’s most recent book, Japanese Animation: Time Out of Mind.