The Japan Academy Film Prize Association announced the winners of the 46th annual Japan Academy Film Prizes in Tokyo on Friday. Toei’s blockbuster basketball feature The First Slam Dunk was awarded Anime of the Year, winning out over fellow finalists Inu-oh, Lonely Castle in the Mirror, One Piece Film Red and Suzume. Directed by Takehiko Inoue, creator of the popular Slam Dunk manga, the film opened at No. 1 at the Japanese box office, and has so far totted up over $120 million in select territories.
Other anime winners included:
- Best Music – RADWIMPS and Kazuma Jinnouchi for Suzume
- Popularity Award – One Piece Film Red (also winner of a Special Award as previously announced)
- 59th Cinema Audio Society (CAS) Award for Motion Picture — Animated: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Original Dialogue Mixer: Carlos Sotolongo, Re-Recording Mixer: Jon Taylor CAS, Re-Recording Mixer: Frank Montaño, Scoring Mixer: Peter Cobbin, Scoring Mixer: Kirsty Whalley, Foley Mixer: Tavish Grade)
- 27th Satellite Award for Best Motion Picture – Animated or Mixed Media: Marcel the Shell with Shoes On
- 2023 RTS Program Award nomination for Children’s Program — Corpse Talk (Tiger Aspect Kids & Family for YouTube Originals). Nominated with live-action programs COP27: Six Ways to Save Our Planet and Dodger.
Kaboom Animation Festival (kaboomfestival.nl) announced the opening film for its 2023 edition (March 24-April 2) will be Nayola, making its Amsterdam premiere on March 30 in the Eye venue with director José Miguel Ribeiro and voice actress Medusa in attendance. The film will have an encore screening in the Melkweg Cinema on April 1.
Synopsis: Nayola, a young mother, goes searching for her husband who disappeared during the war, leaving her two-year-old daughter, Yara, and her mother Lelena behind. Years later, Yara is a rebellious teenager and subversive rap singer angered by her mother’s decision and by the injustice that holds a tight grip on Angolan society.
Ribeiro infuses his feature with a fascinating mysticism, exploring conflict through magical realism. He covers the harrowing reality of Angola, but not without a redemptive poetic charge, using the jackal as a symbol of strength and resilience, while also showing how people (figuratively and literally) have learned to wear masks to hide themselves.
“We killed so many, have seen so many people die, there aren’t many people left to talk about what it was like.”
The official trailer of the 30th Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film (itfs.de/en) has launched online in anticipation of this milestone edition of the ITFS. Featuring rolling marbles, spirals and loops and figures in white and green coming together in celebration, the “Out of Bounds” spot will be shown online and in cinemas across Germany. It was created and realized by Berlin-based animation artist Merlin Flügel. The festival runs April 25-30.
“The marble run is subject to certain rules and follows a certain track. But the real fun begins when unforeseen things happen. When balls derail and the track develops a life of its own. To me, this tension between chaos and order is what makes a festival tick, and I wanted to pick up on this feeling in my trailer,” Flügel explained in an interview with ITFS.
“Animated short film in particular is so versatile that as a viewer of a short film program you have to engage with so many different ideas within such a short space of time. This is often an emotional rollercoaster ride. It can be overwhelming, sometimes thrilling, sometimes you are overcome by chaos. As for me, that’s what makes short film so transformative and exciting as an art form.”