The fifth edition of Animation is Film (AIF), the L.A.-based animation festival organized by Annecy, GKIDS, and Variety, has unveiled the winners of this year’s competition.
Following up on its Cannes premiere in spring and a best feature win at Annecy in June, Little Nicolas – Happy as Can Be scored the top prize at AIF, the grand jury prize.
Said jury member and Variety chief film critic Peter Debruge, “Co-directors Amandine Fredon and Benjamin Massoubre have crafted a wonderful hand-drawn tribute to French cartoonists René Goscinny and Jean-Jacques Sempé. By adapting the duo’s distinctive style to animation, they have not only brought these beloved characters to life but also revealed the lesser-known lives of the artists responsible for their creation.”
Nora Twomey’s new Netflix feature My Father’s Dragon scored the AIF special jury prize after making its North American premiere at the festival. It’s produced by Ireland’s Cartoon Saloon and will premiere worldwide on the streamer November 11.
Armenia’s 2022 Oscar submission Aurora’s Sunrise won this year’s AIF audience award. The animated documentary tells the story of silent-era movie star Aurora Mardiganian, who escaped the Ottoman Empire’s genocide of Armenian people.
João Gonzalez’s Ice Merchants won the shorts jury prize at this year’s AIF. When it premiered at Cannes Critics’ Week last spring, it scored the Leitz Cine Discovery Prize, becoming the first Portuguese animated film to win an award at the Cannes sidebar.
2022 Animation is Film Winners
Grand Jury Prize
- Little Nicolas – Happy as Can Be (Amandine Fredon, Benjamin Massoubre)
Special Jury Prize
- My Father’s Dragon (Nora Twomey)
- Aurora’s Sunrise (Inna Sahakyan)
Shorts Jury Prize
- Ice Merchants (João Gonzalez)
Pictured at top: Little Nicolas – Happy as Can Be, My Father’s Dragon, Aurora’s Sunrise, Ice Merchants