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FESTIVALS France

Annecy: Success for French animation

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French animated film is the main theme at the 30th Annecy Film Festival, which closes on Saturday. Kicking off on June 5, the event features 231 films (features, shorts, and industrial, television, graduation and Internet films) from 35 countries, an homage to Tim Burton (who attended the festival), a retrospective of Italian animated films, and, last but not least, three days dedicated to the 16th MIFA (international animated film market) from June 7-9.

Also on the programme were discussions on new automation techniques for secondary characters and crowds, as well as on Azur & Asmar [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Michel Ocelot (see news), between the film’s director, studio and producer (Nord-Ouest Production/Mac Guff Ligne/Studio O).

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As for France, apart from the two French features in competition (Astérix et les Vikings [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Stefan Fjeldmark and Jesper Moller and Renaissance [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Aton Soumache
interview: Christian Volckman
film profile
]
by Christian Volckman, on which Cineuropa did a Focus), the event opened with the world premiere of U [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Serge Elissalde and Grégoire Solotareff, which will be released in theatres on October 11 by Gebeka Films.

Produced by Prima Linea Productions, the €5.25m film on the friendship between a princess and a unicorn is being sold internationally by Celluloïd Dreams and included an advance on receipts from the CNC, €450,000 from France 3 Cinéma and a pre-sales agreement with Canal +. The CNC and SPFA (Animated Film Producers Union) used Annecy as an occasion to release the findings of a study on the increasing popularity of the genre. Eight animated features were made in France in 2005, compared to a total of 21 over the five previous years. From 2000 to 2005, investment increased to over €250m, bringing the average budget up to €8.64m (including Arthur et Les minimoys’s substantial €65m budget). France provided 83% of financing and in six years Canal + pre-bought 19 films for €18.7m, while broadcasters invested €14.4m for the same amount of features. In the same period, the CNC granted ten advances on receipts of €4.55m and TPS started pre-sales last year of €4.2m for four animated features.

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(Translated from French)

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