The Tokyo Anime Awards Festival (TAAF), whose 8th edition was held March 12–15, has announced the winners of this year’s competition.
The top feature prize went to Josep, which is on a roll. The historical drama follows the plight of Spanish cartoonist and activist Josep Bartoli after he flees Franco’s fascist regime in 1939. Directed by the French artist Aurel, a political cartoonist in his own right, the film has been well received: it won a César last week and was selected by Cannes last year. Its haul of prizes also includes a European Film Award.
Coffin, a graduation project from France’s prestigious Gobelins school, won the short film grand prize. In the wordless five-minute film, a man tries to sleep in a dorm room, but is tormented by increasingly outlandish sounds and images. Watch it below:
TAAF began life as the Tokyo Anime Awards, which were handed out at the annual Tokyo International Anime Fair. When that event merged with the Anime Contents Expo, the awards were spun off into a new festival, TAAF.
This year, 22 features and 817 shorts were submitted to the competition — slight drops from last year’s numbers. Juries voted remotely. The feature jury consisted of Sunao Katabuchi, Michiyoshi Minamisawa, Anca Damian, and Rémi Chayé. The short film jury was made up of Toshiyuki Inoue, Masao Takiyama, Erick Oh, and Daria Kashcheeva.
Separately, TAAF also honors the year’s best anime. This year’s winners were announced in February: Kyoto Animation’s Violet Evergarden: The Movie and Science Saru’s Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!, directed by Masaaki Yuasa, won best feature and best tv series respectively. TAAF additionally hands out annual achievement awards. This year’s honorees include veteran Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki and the late manga artist Momoko Sakura.
Here is the full list of competition winners:
Josep — dir. Aurel (France, Spain, Belgium)
Award of Excellence
Nahuel and the Magic Book — dir. German Acuña (Chile, Brazil)
Coffin — dirs. Yuanqing Cai, Nathan Crabot, Houzhi Huang, Mikolaj Janiw, Mandimby Lebon, Théo Tran Ngoc (France)
Award of Excellence
Shooom’s Odyssey — dir. Julien Bisaro (France, Belgium)
Toshima City Award
Runmania — dir. Daria Stolbetsova (Russia)
Best Student Film
The Balloon Catcher — dir. Isaku Kaneko (Japan)