Vancouver film vies for top honours in competition as City brings taste of world-class animation ecosystem to France
June 13, 2016 (Annecy, France) The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) and nine of Vancouver’s top animation studios have descended on France for the third time in three years for the 56th Annual Annecy Festival with the hopes of taking home top film prizes while courting skilled workers and dollars to support Vancouver’s exploding animation sector.
The VEC and the Vancouver studios – Animal Logic, Comic Animation/Cinesite Animation, Stickgirl Productions, Urban Safari Entertainment, Bardel Entertainment, Global Mechanic Media, Titmouse, Atomic Cartoons and Flying Kraken Creative Studios – will be on site for the duration of the festival and featured prominently in the first ever Canada Pavilion at the International Animation Film Market (Mifa). Each company has specific goals ranging from talent recruitment and meeting buyers to seeking co-production opportunities and representing their studios at screenings of their work.
Ann Marie Fleming’s “Window Horses” (Stickgirl Productions/NFB) is among ten animated feature films vying for top honours in the festival competition, and Fleming is the sole Vancouver representative in the Canada Territory Spotlight. Meanwhile, Titmouse brings R-rated “Nerdland” for its European screening debut, and its advertising film, “Adult Swim: First Dates,” has been included in the Commissioned Films in Competition.
“Being our third year at Annecy, the VEC continues its commitment to helping these studios make the connections they need to fill jobs in Vancouver,” said Vancouver Economic Commission’s Digital Entertainment & Interactive (DE&I) Sector Manager Nancy Mott. “With more than 60 VFX and animation companies in the city and the enormous growth in the sector, even Vancouver’s fast-growing pool of talent cannot meet its demand. Therefore, we are courting artists and technicians abroad in addition to hiring within our local hubs.”
Recent examples of high-profile animation projects that have landed in Vancouver include Angry Birds, Hotel Transylvania, The Prophet, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Slugterra, Sausage Party, My Little Pony, Veggie Tales, Smurfs, Ratchet and Clank, Escape from Planet Earth, Transformers: Rescue Bots, Mariachi Zombie and Counterfeit Cat.
“Vancouver is a world-class destination for animation companies and talent,” said Mott. “We have first-rate infrastructure, a collaborative community of innovators and proximity to major industry hubs in the U.S. Our business-friendly climate is robust with excellent tax incentives. Combined with exceptional post-secondary training facilities and phenomenal quality of life, Vancouver has earned its place in the top three VFX and animation cities in the world.”
The Canadian government realises the need to support this growing industry and has revised elements of its International Mobility Program to ease the way of temporary workers contributing to Canada’s economic and cultural interests. Most relevant to Annecy is the francophone speaker fast-track program that enables an easier transition to Canadian roles for artists in France and French-speaking European countries.
The VEC welcomes Annecy attendees interested in learning about the growing Digital Entertainment business in Vancouver and Canada to visit their booth, which is part of the Canada Pavilion throughout the duration of the festival. More information about the expansion of the animation industry in Vancouver, including a video about why Vancouver is the place to grow your animation career, can be found on their website.
About the Vancouver Economic Commission
The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) works to strengthen the city’s economic future by supporting existing businesses, attracting foreign investment and promoting international trade. The VEC strives to position Vancouver as a globally recognized city for innovative, creative and sustainable business. www.vancouvereconomic.com