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Loving Vincent scoops the Audience Award at Annecy


- The film by Polish director Dorota Kobiela and British filmmaker Hugh Welchman has made a splash at the end of an edition that saw Japan’s Masaaki Yuasa claim victory

Loving Vincent scoops the Audience Award at Annecy
Loving Vincent by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman

While the feature competition jury at the 41st Annecy International Animation Film Festival crowned Japanese film production by bestowing the 2017 Crystal on Lu Over the Wall by Masaaki Yuasa and the Jury Prize on In This Corner of the World by Sunao Katabuchi, the audience was in rhapsodies over a European title: Loving Vincent [+see also:
film review
interview: Dorota Kobiela
film profile
 by Poland’s Dorota Kobiela and the UK’s Hugh Welchman

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Looking back on the final days in the life of famous Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh in 1890, from a screenplay (penned by the duo of filmmakers) fuelled by more than 800 letters that he had sent to his loved ones, this is notable for being the first film in the history of animation to have been made entirely with oil paintings: 120 paintings by Van Gogh himself come to life over the course of a story that is certainly not lacking in mystery, as it toys with the possibility that the artist was in fact murdered, rather than committing suicide. Produced by Polish outfit BreakThru Films and British firm TrademarkLoving Vincent has already racked up some impressive sales for US company Cinema Management Group, particularly for France (where the film will come out on 11 October via La Belle Company), the UK (Altitude on 13 October), Germany and Austria (Weltkino), Scandinavia and the Baltic states (NonStop Entertainment), Spain and Mexico (Fábrica de Cine), Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Turkey, Russia and the CIS, the USA and English-speaking Canada, Australia and New Zealand, South Africa, South Korea and China.

Among the other prizes handed out at Annecy, we should highlight the Honorary Crystal given to Swiss director Georges Schwizgebel, the MIFA Award for Animation Personality of the Year, which went to Marc Bonny (Gebeka Films) and Eric Beckman (GKIDS), and the Gan Foundation Award for Distribution, which singled out Little Vampire [+see also:
film review
film profile
 by Joann Sfar in Work-in-Progress.

The 41st Annecy Film Festival gathered together more than 10,000 accredited guests (up 11% on 2016’s figures), 3,000 of whom attended the MIFA, which welcomed 1,400 companies, including 430 buyers, distributors and investors. It is also worth pointing out that there was a passionate reception for the recruitment sessions, which saw over 60 major studios from all around the world (Illumination Mac Guff, Pixar, Laika, ILM, Cartoon Nework Asia, Mikros Animation, Xilam, TeamTo and so on) meet more than 900 candidates. Indeed, the animation sector is riding high and boasts some excellent expectations for growth, particularly in France (see the news on the annual review published by the CNC), where the strengthening of the tax credits has led to the recent establishment of around ten studios and has persuaded several French production outfits to relocate all or part of their production activities.

Here is the complete list of award winners:

Feature films

Crystal for a Feature Film 
Lu Over the Wall - Masaaki Yuasa 

Jury Award
In This Corner of the World - Sunao Katabuchi

Audience Award 
Loving Vincent [+see also:
film review
interview: Dorota Kobiela
film profile
 - Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman (Poland/UK)

Short films

Crystal for a Short Film 
The Burden - Niki Lindroth Von Bahr (Sweden)

Jury Award
Kötü Kiz - Ayce Kartal

Jean-Luc Xiberras Award for a First Film 
The Blissful Accidental Death - Sergiu Negulici 

Jury Distinction
L’Ogre - Laurène Braibant (France)

Audience Award
Grandpa Walrus - Lucrèce Andreae 

Short films 
- Animation Off-limits

"Off-limits" Award
Dix puissance moins quarante-trois seconde – F Francis (France)

Graduation films

Crystal for a Graduation Film 
Sog - Jonatan Schwenk
 (HFG – Germany)

Jury Award 
Summer's Puke is Winter's Delight - Sawako Kabuki (Tama Art University - Japan)

Jury Distinction 
Pas à pas - Charline Arnoux, Mylène Gapp, Léa Rubinstayn, Florian Heilig, Mélissa Roux (ESMA -

TV and commissioned films

TV films

Crystal for a TV production
Revolting Rhymes Part One - Jakob Schuh, Jan Lachauer, Bin-han To

Jury Award for a TV Series 
The Man-Woman Case "Wanted" - Anaïs Caura

Special Distinction for a TV Series
BoJack Horseman "Fish Out Of Water" - Mike Hollingsworth (USA)

Commissioned films

Crystal for a Commissioned Film 
Material World - Anna Ginsburg (UK)

Jury Award 
Moby "Are You Lost in the World Like Me?" - Steve Cutts (USA/UK)

Mifa Award for Animation Personality of the Year 
Marc Bonny (Gebeka Films)
Eric Beckman (GKIDS)

Honorary Crystal 
Georges Schwizgebel

Special prizes

Festivals Connexion Award – Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region
Nothing Happens – Uri, Michelle Kranot  (Denmark/France)

Junior Jury Award for a Graduation Film 

What a Peaceful Day - Eden Kai-Hsun Chan (Taipei National University of the Arts - Taiwan)

Junior Jury Award for a Short Film 
Valley of White Birds - Cloud Yang (China)

Young Audience Award 
Hedgehog's Home - Eva Cvijanović

Negative Space - Max Porter, Ru Kuwahata (France)

Best Original Music Award for a Short Film
Radio Dolores - Katariina Lillqvist, Kusti Vuorinen 

Gan Foundation Award for Distribution 
Petit Vampire - Joann Sfar

"CANAL+ Creative Aid" Award for a Short Film 
L’Ogre - Laurène Braibant 

André-Martin Award for a 2016 French Feature Film
The Girl Without Hands [+see also:
film profile
 - Sébastien Laudenbach (France)

André-Martin Award for a French Short Film
Nothing Happens – Uri, Michelle Kranot

André-Martin Special Distinction for a French Short Film
Negative Space - Max Porter, Ru Kuwahata (France)

City of Annecy Award 
Maacher Jhol - Abhishek Verma 
Jamuura (India)

(Translated from French)

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