SIGGRAPH Submissions Record High

ACM SIGGRAPH today announced that it has received a record number of submissions for the Computer Animation Festival to be held in conjunction with the 2006 edition of SIGGRAPH. The 33rd international conference and exhibition of computer graphics and interactive techniques will take place July 30 through August 3 in Boston, Mass.

The number of submissions for 2006 was up 25% from the previous year. From a field of 726 entries, the Computer Animation Festival jury selected 97 projects, including 38 student films for their exemplary use of computer-generated imagery and animation, and compelling storytelling.

“From across the globe, the word is out that the Computer Animation Festival is one of the premier venues for showcasing artistic and technical talent in the film world,’ says Terrence Masson, the SIGGRAPH 2006 Computer Animation Festival chair from Digital Fauxtography Inc. “The bar of excellence has risen even higher and this year’s crop of accepted pieces is diverse, thought-provoking, and technically superb.”

This year’s Best of Show is One Rat Short, a film by Alex Weil from the U.S. The short follows a New York City rat who discovers love, danger and fate during as journey from his gritty world to the interior of a futuristic laboratory. Masson comments, ‘This piece immediately stood out to the Jury for many reasons. The film’s emotional tone, cinematography and technical realization all melded wonderfully into a simple yet touching short film. Repeatedly, the two lead characters transfixed our gaze with extreme close-ups, and we instantly wondered what they were thinking. Our ability to clearly empathize with the main characters’ desires is one of the film’s single greatest achievements.’

An extimated 25,000 computer graphics and interactive technology professionals from six continents are expected to descend upon Boston for SIGGRAPH 2006. Registration for the conference and exhibition is open to the public. For more information on the SIGGRAPH 2006 Computer Animation Festival, go to http://ls.siggraph.org/t/562345/19674900/49172/0/.

Special Jury Honors

458nm

Jan Bitzer, Ilija Brunck, Tom Weber

Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg

Germany

The romantic story of two mechanical snails that find each other under the moonlight.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘The initial submitted artist’s description in no way prepared us for the stunning impact of this film. The grace, beauty, and power conveyed with such humble subjects are only more appreciated upon multiple viewings. Intricate details and subtle animation build layer upon layer of simple elegance.’

Fog

Emilio Ramos

Spain

An old man spins a nostalgic story about the village’s flying sheep bringing the town to a brief moment of prosperity

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘An original and very personal work that is absolutely beautiful in so many ways. The combination of such originality with overall technical excellence makes the piece quite memorable. The look, the storytelling, and the facial animation of the main character specifically are all completely brilliant. A film truly meant to be watched multiple times.’

The Building

Eric Riewer

France

The setting is an apartment building where a colorful grandmother bangs on a wall in complaint of the neighbor singing loudly while taking shower.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘The set up, payoff, and comic timing make this one of the most humorous films this year. Another example of great design, animation and gag all coming together in a superb, technically tight edit. A hilariously funny piece.’

King Kong ‘ New York Minute

Chris White

New Zealand

Watch New York grow before your eyes.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘A brilliant, behind-the-scenes demonstration of a mind-boggling and complex sequence. Much of the vast volume of visual effects work done today fails to impress because we’ve seen it all and we’ve seen SO much of it. ‘New York Minute’ is so stunning that we are reminded just how much thought, time, and effort go into producing today’s visual effects feature film work.’

Into Pieces

Guilherme Marcondes

Brazil

Have you ever had the feeling things don’t fit in?

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘Short, simple, hilarious, and brilliant. One of many examples of outstanding short film-making without 3D elements. This year, we specifically requested more 2D animations because there maybe a misconception that SIGGRAPH is all about 3D ‘ this is clearly not the case. The fresh look of this film, the comic timing, and tight animation makes it a very clear favorite.’

Delivery

Till Nowak

Germany

An old man lives a lonely life under the dark shadows of industrial smog. One day he receives a mysterious package which gives him the ability to change his environment.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘A perfect example of the power of storytelling. Using computer graphics to illustrate this simple fantasy world is truly the filmmaker taking advantage of the medium.’

Robin Hood Flour

Richard Rosenman

Canada

It is a holiday evening and the main characters (Andrew and Elizabeth) are being interviewed at their dining room table. They are furiously busy wrapping gingerbread cookies in gift boxes. The table shows various gift-wrapping accessories, the freshly baked cookies (complete with handwritten names), a glamorous candle ornament, and a kitchen cloth with the Robin Hood logo. The cold winter setting outside contrasts the warm dining room lighting inside and helps develop a cozy holiday atmosphere.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘One of the best examples of character animation in the entire show. Absolutely tight timing with wonderfully subtle eye movements, voice talent, staging, character design, lighting, set dressing, and much more. In fact, the piece was so well received that we put two separate spots in the show ‘ one in the Electronic Theater and one in Animation Theater.’

My Date from Hell

Tim Weimann and Tom Bracht

Germany

The Devil has grown mild-tempered and a bit fat in his old age. He does not like Hell anymore and wants to find a suitable mate to start a new life. Naturally, he starts his search by posting personal ads in the local newspaper, reviewing dating videos, and meeting various women on blind dates. Find out if the Devil can find the true woman of his dreams.

Comments from Computer Animation Festival Chair:

‘Great character development makes this film stand out and easily sustain itself even though it is 14 minutes long ‘ by far the longest piece accepted this year. The film has absolutely everything ‘ great character and set design, cinematography, and brilliant attention to detail. An incredible accomplishment by a handful of students from the Filmakademie Baden-W’rttemberg.