annecy_2016_wrapup_main annecy_2016_wrapup_main
Festivals

ANNECY 2017: Annecy To Launch New Festival In Asia

Last week at the Annecy festival in France, the event’s organizers announced a second major animation event that will bear the Annecy trademark: the Annecy Asia International Animation Festival set to debut in Seoul, South Korea.

The new Asian festival represents a partnership between CITIA (the French organization that runs the Annecy festival) and SBA Animation Center (organizers of SICAF, Seoul International Cartoon & Animation Festival), in addition to Korean telecommunications company SK Broadband.

Harry (Sang Chul) Yoon of SK Broadband, Hyungchul Joo (SBA - Seoul Animation Center), and Patrick Eveno (CITIA) signing the Annecy Asia partnership agreement last Tuesday in Annecy. Photo: G. Piel/CITIA.
Harry (Sang Chul) Yoon of SK Broadband, Hyungchul Joo (SBA – Seoul Animation Center), and Patrick Eveno (CITIA) signing the Annecy Asia partnership agreement last Tuesday in Annecy. Photo: G. Piel/CITIA.

The inaugural event will take place September 2019 at the Digital Media City, a high-tech complex spanning over six million square feet that includes theaters, museums, exhibition spaces, and conference rooms.

“The Annecy Festival, set in a town with a beautiful landscape, will be associated with Seoul, Asia’s central city that has its own history and is also developing technology of the future,” said Hyungcheol Joo, CEO of SBA Animation. “Together, we will create the most popular animation festival in Asia.”

In many ways, launching a new festival in the heart of the Asia’s scorching-hot animation industry is a no-brainer. But it also represents a gamble on Annecy’s part to dissociate the festival brand from its French location, which is key to its uniqueness. The world’s animators used to come to Annecy; now Annecy is taking the show to them.

If the Asian animation community stops coming to France and chooses to only attend their localized version, it would weaken the international flavor of the original event, which brings together artists from every corner of the globe. On the other hand, an offshoot event could inspire more people in Asia to attend the main event, helping to expand what is already the world’s largest international animation festival.

The Annecy organizers are confident that the idea will work in everyone’s favor. “With this partnership, we mutually engage to unite our skills,” said Mickaël Marin, CITIA managing director. “We are certain that this international dynamic will enrich all parties involved collectively.”

  • Cameron Ward

    Interesting. Seems like this was done because of China’s bad PR nightmare about Have a Nice Day.

    Are you guys going to post a results list of Annecy 2017 or the overall responses of the films shown in and out of competition? Sounds like there were some big hits there.