The competition programmes and panoramas of the World Festival of Animated Film – Animafest Zagreb will screen a total of 171 films, a number guaranteeing its faithful audience an insight into the best and most interesting animated works made in the last two years and a view on new animation techniques and expressions. We will get a chance to see the works by some of the most exciting emerging filmmakers and find out about the novelties from renowned and cult filmmakers whose works have been regularly featured in some of the numerous festival programmes during the long 40 years of Animafest’s history.
It is a great pleasure to see seventeen home-made films among the world animation elite. The Grand Competition features 32 titles, including the following Croatian films: The Flower of Battle by Simon Bogojević Narath and Why Elephants? by Marko Meštrović. Simon Bogojević’s newest work, made in 2011, once again confirmed him as one of the most important Croatian mid-generation artists. The Flower of Battle won the best animated film award at last year’s Days of Croatian Film, a jury special mention at Animateka in Ljubljana and the best original film award at the Croatian Animated Film Festival. A portrayal of a hazy underworld of Arcadian atmosphere, inhabited by unusual characters was inspired by motives from The Flower of Battle by Fiore dei Liberi from 1410 and The Dialogue in Hell Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu by Maurice Joly from 1864. Why Elephants? by Marko Meštrović is a combination of 2D and 3D animation, asking the following: “Do we have answers to important questions?” It earned the best animation award at the 3rd Croatian Animated Film Festival.
Author Alen Vuković is the only Croatian representative in the commissioned film programme, with his trailer for the feature film Koko and Ghosts, the winner of the best commissioned film award at the recently closed Days of Croatian Film.
Two works by the extremely prolific animator and illustrator Ivana Guljašević will be screened in the children’s competition programme: Bu-Tu’s Drum, a film about a generation gap, mutual understanding and respect, intended for children age 7-10, and also the recent winner of the Golden Oil Lamp Award for the film that best promotes ethical values, at the Days of Croatian Film; and Search, an environmental story about animals who fled the polluted city in search of a better and cleaner home. The film is targeting children age 4-7. Among 33 competition films, there is also a work by Zagreb Academy’s student Mia Murat, Park.
The 26 Grand Panorama entries also include one Croatian film – New Hippie Future, by Dalibor Barić, a young multimedia artist, cartoonist and collage technique fan, who applied it in this Aldous-Huxley-atmosphere surrealist-psychedelic film. One domestic film will also be presented in the Student Panorama, Fox by Petra Zlonoga, another young filmmaker whose each new work captivates the attention of both juries and audiences: Gregor won the best student film award at the 2nd FHAF, while Daniil Ivanović, You’re Free won the best original screenplay award at this year’s, 3rd FHAF.
The Croatian Panorama, a programme that will give Animafest visitors a broader insight into our national animated production, will present nine works by young and mid-generation filmmakers. The quantity and quality of films selected by Animafest’s art director Daniel Šuljić inspires optimism and joy. Most of these films have been frequent guests at international film festivals, winning many awards: Dove sei, amor mio by Veljko Popović participated at around 50 festivals and earned five awards, including a Special Mention at Sarajevo Film Festival; Father by a group of authors (including Veljko Popović), which will be screened in Annecy this year in May, already won a Special Mention at the Croatian Animated Film Festival and Oktavijan for the best animated film at the Days of Croatian Film. Then there are I Already Know What I Hear by Darko Masnec, the winner of Grand Prix and best student film award at this year’s FHAF, Irena Jukić-Pranjić’s Ornament of the Soul, which participated at more than a dozen international festivals, including Cannes Court Metrage and awards and Ljubljana’s Animateka and FHAF, and Daniel Šuljić’s In Chains, the winner of best original film at the 2nd FHAF, screened in Short Film Corner programme of the 64th Canned International Film Festival.
In addition to the listed titles, the programme will present: We used to call it: Moon by acclaimed award-winning multimedia artist Marko Tadić; Cat by Goran Stojnić, which will travel straight after Animafest to Annecy, where it will be screened in the festival’s official selection; and Son of Satan by Marko Dješka, a talented student at Zagreb’s Academy.
Aside from these Croatian-produced films, the selection also includes a Norwegian film by two Croatian filmmakers: Ivana Bošnjak and Lea Vidaković’s Crossed Herrings will be screened in Student Competition.