Annecy Unveils Feature Films in Competition, Contrechamp & Special Screenings

Attendees are in for a truly triumphant return to a fully-live edition at the 2022 Annecy Festival. At today’s press conference held at the CNC, festival director Mickaël Marin, and artistic director Marcel Jean presented highlights of the 46th edition to be held from June 13-18 and announced the Official Selection of feature films.

“I’d like to remind you of the state of mind in which we have worked these past few months. I know we all had our hearts set on meeting again fully, totally, on reconnecting with the soul of this festival composed of encounters and sharing, to once again spark that movie theater throb,” said Marin. “We imagined this year’s festival as a fireworks of creativity and diversity in order to display the vibrant power of a cinema that we are so proud to serve.”

Jean added, “The Festival’s 2022 selection is diversified and surprising. It bears witness to the vitality of animation and to the outstanding development of worldwide production over the course of the past few years. The qualities and quantities are such that one feels almost cramped for space in the world’s largest animation festival!”

Tough decisions were made to narrow down the roughly 100 feature films submitted for consideration; at last, Jean and his committee selected 10 titles for the Feature Films in Competition program (in alphabetical order):

 

Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman
Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman

Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman by Pierre Foldes
Miyu Productions, Cinéma Defacto (Canada, France, Luxembourg)
“This may very well be the most eagerly-awaited animation feature of the year! Adapted freely from several of Haruki Murakami’s short stories, the film is highly unique, its structure honoring the traits of the novellas which inspired the filmmaker.” ­ — Marcel Jean ­

 

Charlotte
Charlotte

Charlotte by Eric Warin & Tahir Rana
January Films, Walking the Dog, Les Productions Balthazar (Belgium, Canada, France)
“The all too short life of the German-Jewish painter Charlotte Salomon, who died at 26 in Auschwitz, is portrayed in this gripping movie which explores an outstanding artistic temperament swept up in the whirlwinds of History.”

 

Goodbye, DonGlees!
Goodbye, DonGlees!

Goodbye, DonGlees! by Atsuko Ishizuka
Kadokawa Pictures (Japan)
Goodbye DonGlees! released in Japan in February is both a story of friendship and of rite of passage. Funny, moving, close to nature, a film which will delight anime fans.”

 

The House of the Lost on the Cape
The House of the Lost on the Cape

The House of the Lost on the Cape (Misaki no Mayoiga) by Shinya Kawatsura
DAVID Production (Japan)
“A meticulous adaptation of Kashiwaba’s novel, this feature film rekindles memories of the tragic 2011 earthquake and ensuing tsunami. Although the make-up of this film’s first few minutes may appear relatively conventional, the rest is definitely full of surprises with segments of it on the cusp of experimental.”

 

The Island
The Island

The Island by Anca Damian
Aparte Film (Romania, France, Belgium)
“Using her unique and always surprising style, Anca Damian, winner of the 2012 Feature Film Cristal, freely revisits the myth of Robinson Crusoe, treating viewers with a dive into her baroque realm.”

 

Little Nicholas – Happy as Can Be
Little Nicholas – Happy as Can Be

Little Nicholas – Happy as Can Be by Amandine Fredon & Benjamin Massoubre
Bibidul Productions, Onyx Films (France, Luxembourg)
“Using animation to redraw Sempé’s strokes and add color to the artist’s drawings was certainly a great challenge. A challenge taken up by a talented team that never took the easy way out and that ensures we feel right at home with Goscinny’s verve and Sempé’s agility. A major popular movie which — we do trust — will easily bridge the generation gap!”

 

No Dogs or Italians Allowed
No Dogs or Italians Allowed

No Dogs or Italians Allowed by Alain Ughetto
Les Films du Tambour de Soie (France, Italy)
Jasmine was the revelation of the 2013 Annecy Festival. Now, nearly 10 years later, Alain Ughetto is back with a film that again draws deeply from autobiography, a film in which the narrative device is once again built on representation of the film’s production resources. Annecy Festival is thrilled to renew its acquaintance with this too-rare auteur.”

 

My Love Affair with Marriage
My Love Affair with Marriage

My Love Affair with Marriage by Signe Baumane
The Marriage Project, Locomotive Production, Antevita Films (U.S.A., Latvia, Luxembourg)
“One of the great forces of contemporary feminist animation, here Signe Baumane offers us a second feature film pursuing an approach that’s both unique and consistent. It is equally intimate and drole, without forgetting the joy brought us by the songs interspersed throughout the story.” ­ ­

 

Nayola
Nayola

­Nayola by José Miguel Ribeiro
Praça Filmes (Portugal, Belgium, Netherlands, France)
“Political and social, José Miguel Ribeiro delves into Angolan history to relate the fate of three women from the same family, a tribute to the struggle of brave Angolan women whose lives are imprinted with the violence of history. This is a highly successful passage from short formats to feature film by a reputed short filmmaker.”

 

Unicorn Wars
Unicorn Wars

Unicorn Wars by Alberto Vazquez
Abano Producións, Uniko Estudio Creativo, Autour de Minuit, Schmuby Productions (Spain, France)
“Prolific and gifted, the Spaniard Alberto Vazquez favors us with his second feature film, so striking with its visual opulence, its generous staging and its originality. A pleasure not only for the eyes but for the spirit as well!”

 

 

There are also 10 films competing in the Contrechamp category:

Aurora's Sunrise
Aurora’s Sunrise

Aurora’s Sunrise by Inna Sahakyan
Gebrüder Beetz Filmproduktion, Bars Media, Artbox Laisvalaikio Klubas, VS! (Germany, Armenia, Lithuania)
“In this animated documentary so impeccably directed by Inna Sahakyan, Aurora Mardiganian, star of silent movies, comes back to life to tell the story of the genocide she survived. This is a work which draws its breath from the winds of history.” — Marcel Jean ­ ­ ­ ­

 

Chun Tae-il: A Flame That Lives On
Chun Tae-il: A Flame That Lives On

Chun Tae-il: A Flame That Lives On (Tae-il-i) by Jun-pyo Hong
Myung Films (South Korea)
“This is a film that sweeps us into the heart of the Seoul tailors’ labor struggles. Of classic composition, this moving social drama is sourced in the true story of one of the labor movement’s most emblematic figures.” ­ ­

 

Dozens of Norths
Dozens of Norths

Dozens of Norths (Ikuta no Kita) by Koji Yamamura
Yamamura Animation, Miyu Productions (France, Japan)
“A regular of the Festival, Koji Yamamura brings us a contemplative and enigmatic first feature which builds languid fascination while his neat graphics unfold subtly. Definitely a film to discover.” ­ ­ ­ ­

 

Home Is Somewhere Else
Home Is Somewhere Else

Home Is Somewhere Else by Carlos Hagerman & Jorge Villalobos
Brinca Animation Studio, Shina Global (U.S.A., Mexico)
“Another animated documentary here focused on the fates and dreams of young Mexicans migrating to the U.S. Three stories with as many graphic and technical styles, a film of burning topicality.” ­ ­

 

Khamsa – The Well of Oblivion
Khamsa – The Well of Oblivion

Khamsa – The Well of Oblivion by Khaled Chiheb
D-CLIK (Algeria)
“What bliss to welcome an Algerian feature film to this competition for the very first time! Leisurely, contemplative and almost esoteric, Khamsa reminds us of Laloux at times and of Laguionie’s Gwen and others… In the end, the result is eminently personal and promises beautiful tomorrows for North African animation.” ­ ­

 

My Grandfather's Demons
My Grandfather’s Demons

My Grandfather’s Demons by Nuno Beato
Sardinha Em Lata, Marmitafilms, Caretos Film (Spain, France, Portugal)
“A real swoop down into the family novel, My Grandfather’s Demons surprises by its transition from one technique to the next, as well as by the density of its discourse on roots and the impact of the latter on our social relationships.” ­ ­

 

The Other Shape
The Other Shape

­­­The Other Shape (La otra forma) by Diego Guzman
Hierro Animación, Smith & Smith (Colombia)
“This year, the honor of representing South America in the Contrechamp category goes to Colombian Diego Guzman. He offers us a dialogue-free futuristic film, an intriguing trip through a hallucinatory world.” ­ ­

 

Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish
Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish

Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish by Lei Lei
C Ray Studio, Chinese Shadows (U.S.A., Netherlands)
“The Chinese artist Lei Lei is back, with this teeming feature where he explores his family past, creating a kind of huge surrealistic collage dotted with pop art references. First shown in Rotterdam, Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish is one of the most singular objects of the 2022 Annecy selection.” ­ ­ ­ ­ ­­ ­ ­

­

Quantum Cowboys
Quantum Cowboys

­Quantum Cowboys by Geoff Marslett
Fit Via Vi (U.S.A.)
“Now, here is a very strange Western in which the director uses rotoscoping and adds elements of time travel. An eye-opener for the selection committee and a film we want to share today with festival-goers.” ­ ­

­ ­ ­

Yaya e Lennie – The Walking Liberty
Yaya e Lennie – The Walking Liberty

Yaya e Lennie – The Walking Liberty by Alessandro Rak
Mad Entertainment S.p.A. (Italy)
“For his third representation in Annecy competition, the Italian Alessandro Rak is back with a lighthearted film, an ecological sci-fi fable. At times Yaya e Lennie seems as if it is transposing Of Mice and Men into a post-apocalyptic scene.” ­ ­

 

 

Minions: The Rise of Gru
Minions: The Rise of Gru

Of course, visitors to Annecy will also be treated to the latest Despicable installment of Illumination’s mega-hit franchise with Minions: The Rise of Gru as the festival’s opening film. Marin and Jean also revealed more exclusive first-looks and big screen treats in the Screening Events program, including:

  • ­The first footage from Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (Part One), directed by Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers and Justin K. Thompson ­ ­ ­
  • The first footage from Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, directed by Joel Crawford of DreamWorks
  • The first footage from Ernest and Celestine, a Trip to Gibberitia, directed by Jean-Christophe Roger and Julien Chheng of Studio Folivar
  • The feature film My Father’s Secrets by Véra Belmont
  • Walt Disney Animation Studios presents a look ahead at Strange World, plus the studio’s Chief Creative Officer and Oscar-winning director/writer of Frozen & Frozen 2, Jennifer Lee, will receive Annecy’s Honorary Cristal Award ­ ­ ­ ­ ­
  • Special screening of Disney and Pixar’s Lightyear, with director Angus MacLane and producer Galyn Susman in person
  • Special screening of The Sea Beast, directed by Chris Williams and produced by Netflix Animation.

Plus, festival-goers will discover tomorrow’s next big animation sensation with sneak peeks from 15 projects currently taking shape in the WIP program; including eight feature films, three series, three XR experiences and one short film.

Learn more and register to attend the Annecy Festival 2022 (June 13-18) at annecy.org. Attending the show? Be sure to pick up our extra-special 35h Anniversary Issue of Animation Magazine!

 

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