Los Angeles Animation Festival December 3rd – December 7th

PRESS RELEASE; The US premiere of the new Jan Å vankmajer feature, Pixar’s Teddy Newton, Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist and honoree Will Vinton will all be at LAAF’s December program at Cinefamily!

The Los Angeles Animation Festival, goes International as it unspools Friday December 3 through Tuesday December 7 at Cinefamily’s Silent Movie Theatre at 611 N. Fairfax in Los Angeles. The US premiere of Czech filmmaker Jan Å vankmajer’s feature Surviving Life (Theory and Practice), a screening and interview with Pixar’s Teddy Newton about his film “Day & Night”, two special programs from renowned writer/director/animator and festival honoree Will Vinton and a rare advance screening of Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist top a bill that includes several more features, panels, competition screenings, parties and awards.

Celebrated experimental animator Jan Å vankmajer has only recently finished what he has been quoted as saying will be his last feature, this on top of a long and storied career including such works as Conspirators of Pleasure, Dimensions of Dialogue, Faust and many others created over several active decades. The festival is thrilled to provide a US premiere for Å vankmajer’s Surviving Life (Theory and Practice).

A special guest of the festival is Teddy Newton, character designer through several Pixar projects since joining the studio on The Incredibles, for which he was instrumental in the creation of several of the films memorable characters, as well as its end title sequence. Newton has recently directed “Day & Night”, a unique Pixar short film project which the festival will explore in depth as Newton presents it and is introduced and interviewed by animation historian Jerry Beck.

The work of pioneering clay animation entrepreneur and LAAF festival honoree Will Vinton will be reviewed in a program of his short films, specials and commercials and a twenty-fifth anniversary screening of his feature The Adventures of Mark Twain. Vinton will be on hand to introduce his work and for post screening Q&A’s.

In addition the festival will screen a number of current features not in general release in the US including China’s first independent feature film Piercing 1, Japanese feature Redline, Jiří­ Barta’s In the Attic (his first feature in 25 years!) and independent animator Brent Green’s experimental feature Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then. The festival is rounded out on Tuesday December 7 with a special pre-US release screening of Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist slated into Jerry Beck’s regular monthly Animation Tuesday program. Friday night’s screening of Surviving Life will be followed by a very special retrospective of MTV animation with some of the creators and animators who made the work present.

“We’re are thrilled to be teamed with the non-profit Cinefamily in the staging of this year’s event and happy to be once again at their venue the historic Silent Movie Theater where we staged our inaugural LAAF event in 2007″ says festival co-director John Andrews. The festival was the brainchild of animation director Miles Flanagan who partnered with Andrews, an animation producer, on the event which seeks to both expose unseen work and allow networking opportunities between rising animation talent and successful careerists. This year the non-profit Cinefamily brings its great sense of eclecticism to the process of finding and acquiring work for screening in their intimate and attractive historic venue The Silent Movie Theater.

Details and deadlines for entry in the festival’s three unique competitions are available at the festival website www.laafest.com. Tickets and passes will be available in November at www.cinefamily.org. Potential sponsors should contact john or miles @laafest.com or [email protected]