Films in competition include Approved For Adoption, Zarafa and Ronal The Barbarian; Irish animation to be spotlighted in country focus.
French director Patrice Leconte’s first feature-length animation The Suicide Shop will open France’s Annecy International Animation Film Festival, running Jun 4-9.
Adapted from a novel by Jean Teulé the film revolves around a family whose business specialises in helping people to commit suicide. It will screen as an out-of-competition preview.
Other previews include Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted and Jean-Christophe Dessaint’s eagerly awaited The Day Of The Crows (Le Jour des Corneilles) about a small boy who is brought up in the wild by a brutish father.
The youthful, lakeside animation festival – which is a big draw for animation students from France and beyond – expects to welcome some 7,000 participants from 80 countries this year.
The competition line-up includes Laurent Boileau and graphic novelist Jung’s Approved For Adoption, a hybrid animated documentary inspired by Jung’s autobiographical tale about his life as a Korean-born adoptee in Belgium; Danish fantasy film Ronal The Barbarian, and Anca Damian’s tragic Crulic: The Path To Beyond, about a Romanian immigrant who starved himself to death in a Polish jail after he was wrongly accused of stealing credit cards.
Members of the jury will include producer Sue Goffe of London-based animation house Studio Aka, which produced Grant Orchard’s award-winning short A Morning Stroll; Véronique Cayla, president of Franco-German broadcaster Arte; Singapore filmmaker Eric Khoo; DreamWorks Animation producer Joe Aguilar and Jackie Edwards, executive producer at the BBC’s children channel Cbeebies.
Ireland has been selected as Annecy’s country focus this year. As well as welcoming a larger than usual Irish industry delegation, the festival will screen films such as The Secret Of Kells and When The Wind Blows as well as the television series Fluffy Gardens.
This year, Annecy’s artistic director Serge Bromberg and his creative content teams viewed 2,455 films, 469 more than last year. Alongside the feature-length films, Annecy will also screen 49 shorts, 54 student films, 60 television works in competition and another 41 shorts out of competition.
Elsewhere in the festival, the popular Works In Progress sessions will put the spotlight on Genndy Tartakovsky’s Hotel Transylvania, Raul Garcia’s Edgar Allan Poe-inspired Extraordinary Tales and Foosball from Juan Jose Campanella, who won a foreign language Oscar for the live action The Secret In Their Eyes in 2009.
Hotel Transylvania is a Sony Pictures Animation production for Columbia Pictures, due for release in the US this September. The English-language version will feature the voice of Adam Sandler as Dracula and Selena Gomez as his teenage daughter.
There will also be a Making Of session devoted to the US office box office hit Dr Seuss’ The Lorax on June 7, which is due to be rolled out across Europe over the summer.
The festival’s International Animation Film Market Mifa will run June 6-8. Alongside its habitual guests, the market is expecting larger than normal delegations from Taiwan, Russia, South Africa and Brazil.
Aside from the central exhibition hall featuring exhibitors such as Walt Disney Animation, Ankama and Ubisoft, the market will host a number of talks and press conferences.
Running alongside the market, the annual Carrefour de la Creation recruitment event will aim to connect recent animation graduates with the companies such as Sony Pictures, Disney and DreamWorks.
Annecy’s feature-length film line-up is:
Wrinkles (Arrugas), dir. Ignacio Ferreras (Spain)
Zarafa, dir. Rémi Bezançon, Jean-Christophe Lie (France)
Children Who Chase Voices From Deep Below (Hoshi O Ou Kodomo), dir. Makoto Shinkai (Japan)
Le Tableau, dir. Jean-François Laguionie (Belgium, France)
Approved For Adoption (Couleur De Peau: Miel), dir. Laurent Boileau, Jung (France, Belgium)
Ronal The Barbarian (Ronal Barbaren), dir. Thorbjørn Christoffersen, Kresten Vestbjerg Andersen, Philip Einstein Lipski (Denmark)
Crulic: The Path To Beyond (Crulic – Drumul Spre Dincolo), dir. Anca Damian (Poland, Romania)
Asura, dir. Keiichi Sato (Japan)
The Dearest (Eun-Sil-Yee), dir. Sun-ah Kim, Se-hee Park (South Korea)
Tad, The Lost Explorer, Enrique Gato (Spain)
Out of competition
Anima Buenos Aires, dir. María Verónica Ramírez, Carlos Loiseau, Pablo Rodriguez Jauregui, Florencia Faivre, Pablo Faivre, Carlos Nine (Argentina, Spain)
Delhi Safari, dir. Nikhil Advani (India)
Selkirk: The Real Robinson Crusoe (Selkirk, El Verdadero Robinson Crusoe), dir. Walter Tournier (Argentina, Chile, Uruguay)
Berserk: The Golden Age Arc I “The High King’s Egg” (Berserk: Ougon Jidai-Hen I “Haou No Tamago”) dir. Toshiyuki Kubooka (Japan)
Moon Man, dir. Stephan Schesch (Germany)
A Letter To Momo (Momo E No Tegami), dir. Hiroyuki Okiura (Japan)
The King Of Pigs, dir. Sang-ho Yeun (South Korea)
Zambezia, dir. Wayne Thornley (South Africa)
The Suicide Shop (Le Magasin Des Suicides), dir. Patrice Leconte (France) (Opening Film)
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, dir. Eric Darnell (US)
The Day Of The Crows (Le Jour Des Corneilles), dir. Jean-Christophe Dessaint (France, Belgium)
Dr Seuss’ The Lorax, dir. Chris Renaud (US)
Ernest Et Célestine, dir. Stéphane Aubier, Vincent Patar, Benjamin Renner (France, Belgium, Luxembourg)