The World Animation Summit Returns for Another Star-Filled Edition

The 2022 World Animation Summit will soon bring together creative luminaries and industry leaders to explore the latest trends and technologies in animation and VFX next month, as well as celebrate the just-announced stars being honored with this year’s Hall of Fame awards. Animation Magazine is also excited to offer readers the chance to win a pair of tickets to the Summit (details below).

Taking place November 6-9 on the grounds North Hollywood’s historic hotel The Garland, the Summit will kick off with an opening night gala and award ceremony (Nov. 6), followed by three days of special keynotes, panels and networking breakfasts, lunches and parties with top-tier executives and creative talent representing various aspects of the industry.

As previously announced, this year’s Hall of Fame awards honorees are:

  • Kristine Belson. President of Sony Pictures Animation, who has led the studio through its brightest years (which have seen the release of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,
    The Mitchells vs. the Machines, Vivo and Hair Love).
  • Jorge R. Gutierrez. Writer-director of Netflix’s Annie Award-winning limited series Maya and the Three, director of the feature The Book of Life and co-creator of Nickelodeon’s Emmy-winning show El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera.
  • Ramsey Naito. President of Nickelodeon and Paramount Pictures, who has been a driving force behind movies such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and PAW Patrol: The Movie and hit shows such as Star Trek: Prodigy, Big Nate, Santiago of the Seas and Kamp Koral.
  • Peter Ramsey. Academy Award-winning director of Sony’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and DreamWorks’ Rise of the Guardians, producer of 2023’s Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and director of Netflix’s limited series Lost Ollie.
  • Henry Selick. Academy Award-nominated director of stop-motion classics The Nightmare Before Christmas, Coraline and James and the Giant Peach and Netflix’s acclaimed new feature Wendell & Wild.
  • Mark Swift. Long-time DreamWorks Animation producer whose many credits include Penguins of Madagascar, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, The Croods: A New Age and this year’s Puss in Boots: The Last Wish.
  • Genndy Tartakovsky. Creator of beloved and award-winning animated shows such as Samurai Jack, Sym-Bionic Titan, Star Wars: Clone Wars and Primal and director of Hotel Transylvania and its two sequels.
  • TeamTO. Pioneering indie French animation studio behind such favorites such as Angelo Rules, Mighty Mike, YellowBird, Rabbids Invasion, City of Ghosts and the upcoming show, Jade Armor.
Jean Thoren
Jean Thoren

“It has been so rewarding to see our Animation Summit grow and flourish with each passing year. Despite all the challenges our industry has faced over the past year, 2022 has been quite an amazing year in terms of the range and high caliber of all the new animated movies, series and shorts available to fans of the medium,” says Summit founder and president and publisher of Animation Magazine Jean Thoren.

“Once again, we are thrilled to be able to celebrate and spotlight the vitality of our business and community and to spotlight the achievements of the creative forces in the animation industry. We can’t wait to catch up with all our friends in the worldwide animation community and learn about the their latest innovations and thrilling new projects at the Summit this year.”

Must-See Panels

This year’s Summit will explore many different facets of the animation and VFX industries. Panels will focus on advances in new animation technologies, co-production opportunities, how to pitch animated project to the top execs, a special focus on the latest adult animation boom, the 2023 business survival guide, how to produce your animation project, what animation execs are looking for in the near future and what leading studio recruiters look for in job candidates.

This year’s event will also feature special keynotes by iconic Disney director John Musker (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, The Princess and the Frog, Moana), show creator Karissa Valencia (Spirit Rangers) and exec producer/supervising director Mike
Hollingsworth (Inside Job, BoJack Horseman, Cat Burglar), as well as a fireside chat with Sony Picture Animation’s president Kristine Belson and a festive 20th Anniversary Party for Sony Pictures Animation.

The Summit agenda also features informative talks with the directors, producers and key creatives on this year’s animated films that are contenders for Academy Awards. Sessions
showcasing the making of top animated features include The Bad Guys, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, Lightyear, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, Wendell & Wild, Luck, Marcel the Shell with Shoes On, My Father’s Dragon, The Sea Beast, Strange World and Turning Red. A spotlight on some of the award-winning animated shorts of the year will feature Black Slide, Christopher at Sea, Ice Merchants, Mr. Spam Gets a New Hat, My Year of Dicks, Sierra, The Flying Sailor and The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse.

To learn more about the 2022 World Animation Summit and how to purchase tickets, visit the official website at


Animation Magazine is giving away five pairs of tickets to this can’t-miss Summit (excluding the sold-out Awards Gala) to the first readers to email with the subject line, “I want to go to the Summit!” Giveaway participants must be able to arrange their own travel to the Summit in North Hollywood, California.


WAS Studio Heads
L-R: Kristine Belson (Sony Pictures Animation), Margie Cohn (DreamWorks Animation) and Ramsey Naito (Nickelodeon/Paramount) discuss the state of the industry at the 2021 World Animation Summit.

Featured Speakers & Panelists

A complete list of Summit speakers is available here.

  • Saraswathi Balgam, Founder, Dancing Atoms
  • Zoe Bamsey, Head of Animation Development, BBC Kids & Family
  • Simon Barrionuevo, Founder, Pudoctopus
  • Ben Bayouth, Exec Producer, The Paloni Show! Halloween Special
  • Peter Baynton, Director; The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
  • Kristine Belson, President, Sony Pictures Animation
  • Kim Berglund, VP of Development, Disney Junior
  • Carlos Biern, Director of Content & Distribution, Kids & Family, DEAplaneta Ent.
  • Tricia Biggio, CEO, Invisible Universe
  • Matt Bilfield, Artist and Director, Blockchain Creative Labs
  • Davis Brimer, Founder and CEO, Gamisodes
  • Mark Caballero, Founder, Screen Novelties
  • Sadaf Cohen Muncy, SVP, HappyNest Entertainment
  • Joel Crawford, Director, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, The Croods: A New Age
  • Mo Davoudian, Exec Creative Director/CEO, Brain Zoo
  • John Derevlany, Writer/Producer, Squish, LEGO Chima, Akedo
  • Karen Dufilho, Exec Producer, Epic Games
  • Frank Falcone, President, Creative Director, Guru Studio
  • Dean Fleischer Camp, Director, Marcel the Shell with Shoes On
  • Debbie Flores, Associate, Fox Rothschild
  • Amanda Forbis, Director, The Flying Sailor, When the Day Breaks
  • Jake Friedman, Author, The Disney Revolt, The Art of Blue Sky Studios
  • João Gonzalez, Director, Ice Merchants
  • Mark Gustafson, Director, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
  • Don Hall, Director, Strange World
  • Chris Hamilton, President/Creative Director, OddBot Inc.
  • Guillaume Hellouin, Founder, TeamTO
  • Richard Hickey, CCO, Moonbug Entertainment
  • Bob Higgins, President, Trustbridge Global Media
  • Mike Hollingsworth, Exec Producer/Supervising Director (BoJack Horseman, Inside Job)
  • Peggy Holmes, Director, Luck
  • Ron Holsey, Exec Producer, Interrupting Chicken
  • Shane Houghton, Co-Creator, Big City Greens
  • Elizabeth Ito, Director/Exec Producer, City of Ghosts, Yuki 7
  • Jasmine Johnson, Senior Director Production, Moonbug Entertainment
  • Sander Joon, Director, Sierra
  • William Joyce, Writer-Director, Mr. Spam Gets a New Hat, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
  • Andrew Kavanaugh, CEO/Founder, Kavaleer Productions
  • Brooke Keesling, Head of Animation Talent Development, Bento Box Ent.
  • Scott Kreamer, Executive Producer, Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous
  • Joel Kuwahara, Co-Founder, President of Production, Bento Box Ent.
  • Cort Lane, Exec Producer, My Little Pony: Make Your Mark
  • Curtis Lelash, Producer/Creative Executive
  • Uri Lotan, Director, Black Slide
  • Loris Lunsford, Exec Producer, Interrupting Chicken
  • Angus MacLane, Director, Lightyear, Finding Dory
  • Karen K. Miller, President, Cyber Group Studios USA
  • Fletcher Moules, Director, Entergalactic
  • John Musker, Director, Moana, The Princess and the Frog, Aladdin
  • Alissa Nutting, Creator/Exec Producer, Teenage Euthanasia
  • Patrick Osborne, Director; Love, Death + Robots; Happier Than Ever
  • Latifa Ouaou, Exec VP of Movies, Global Franchises, Nickelodeon/Paramount
  • Pierre Perifel, Director, The Bad Guys
  • Dan Povenmire, Creator, Hamster & Gretel, Phineas and Ferb
  • Pamela Ribon, Writer-Director, My Year of Dicks
  • Sam Riegel, Exec Producer, The Legend of Vox Machina
  • Henry Selick, Director, Wendell & Wild, Coraline
  • Domee Shi, Director, Turning Red, Bao
  • Matt Shichtman, Director, The Gotham Group
  • Craig Silverstein, Creator/Exec Producer, Pantheon, Turn: Washington’s Spies
  • Claudia Spinelli, Senior VP, Nickelodeon
  • Jane Startz, Exec Producer, Duck & Goose
  • Wendy Tilby, Director, The Flying Sailor, When the Day Breaks
  • Nora Twomey, Director, My Father’s Dragon, The Breadwinner
  • Karissa Valencia, Creator, Spirit Rangers
  • Annette Van Duren, Founder, The Van Duren Agency
  • Dave Wasson, Exec Producer, The Cuphead Show!
  • Daniel Weidenfeld, Senior VP, Animation, FOX Entertainment
  • Chris Williams, Director, The Sea Beast, Moana
  • Kris Wimberly, Co-Founder/Head of Creative, Studio Smokescreen


The Garland
The World Animation Summit will once again be hosted on the charming grounds of The Garland in North Hollywood.

The Agenda at a Glance 

Monday, Nov. 7

8:30 — Registration & Networking Breakfast
10:00 — Creative Keynote: Karissa Valencia (Spirit Rangers)
10:30 — Creative Keynote: Mike Hollingsworth (BoJack Horseman, Cat Burglar)
11:00 — How I Got My Show Made! Ben Bayouth, Bob Higgins, Shane Houghton, Mary Bredin
12 PM — Finding the Right Global Partners. Simon Barrionuevo, Carlos Biern, Frank Falcone, Andrew Kavanagh, Karen L. Miller, Sander Schwartz
1:00 — Networking Lunch
2:30 — Award Season Feature Contenders, Part 1. Dean Fleischer Camp (Marcel the Shell with Shoes On), Joel Crawford (Puss in Boots: The Last Wish), Mark Gustafson (Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio), Peggy Holmes (Luck), Domee Shi (Turning Red), Chris Williams (The Sea Beast)
3:20 — Award Season Feature Contenders, Part 2. Don Hall (Strange World), Angus MacLane (Lightyear), Pierre Perifel (The Bad Guys), Henry Selick (Wendell & Wild), Nora Twomey (My Father’s Dragon)
4:30 — Local Heroes: Catching Up with L.A. Indie Studios. Mark Caballero, Mo Davoudian, Selma Gladney-Edelman, Chris Hamilton, Mark Hoffmeier, Mike Rauch
5:30 — L.A. Studio Party

Tuesday, Nov. 8

9 AM — Networking Breakfast
10:00 — Perfecting the Art of the Pitch. Dan Clark, Sadaf Cohen Muncy, Curtis Lelash, Kris Wimberly
11:00 — The Business of Show Business. Debbie Flores, Gregory McKnight, Matt Shichtman, Annette Van Duren
12 PM — Animation Execs Tell You How to Stand Out! Zoe Bamsey, Kim Berglund, Eryk Casemiro, Daniel Weidenfeld, Frank Saperstein
1:00 — Networking Lunch
2:30 — Secrets of Superstar Showrunners. Tze Chun, Scott Kreamer, Dan Povenmire, Dave Wasson, Cort Lane
3:30 — Your 2023 Animation Survival Guide. Saraswathi Vani Balgam, Josh Fisher, Guillaume Hellouin, Saxton Moore

4:30 — Nickelodeon Spotlight: Building Franchises for Kids in Today’s World. Eryk Casemiro, Latifa Ouaou, Claudia Spinelli
5:30 — Animated Shorts Roundtable. Peter Baynton, Tom CJ Brown, Amanda Forbis & Wendy Tilby, João Gonzalez, Sara Gunnarsdóttir, Sander Joon, Uri Lotan, William Joyce
6:30 — Animated Shorts Party
7:30 — Award Season Animated Shorts Screening

Wednesday, Nov. 9

9 AM — Networking Breakfast
10:00 — Breakfast with Animation Master John Musker
11:00 — The Next Frontiers: New & Exciting Trends & Innovations. Tricia Biggio, Matt Bilfield, Davis Brimer, Richard Hickey
12 PM — Transforming Animation with a Real-Time Mindset. Karen Dufilho, Elizabeth Ito, Patrick Osborne
1:00 — Networking Lunch
2:30 — A Taste of Apple TV+ A Preview of the Streamer’s Animated World. Jennifer Dodge, Ron Holsey, Loris Lunsford, Jane Startz, Alex Rockwell, Halle Stanford
3:30 — You’re Hired! A Primer on Finding Your Perfect Job in Animation. Eric Combrié, Brooke Keesling, Nellie Tehrani
4:30 — Welcome to the New Age of Adult Animation. Joel Kuwahara, Fletcher Moules, Alissa Nutting, Sam Riegel, Craig Silverstein
5:30 — Closing Night Fireside Chat with Kristine Belson
6:30 — Sony Pictures Animation’s 20th Anniversary Party



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