Animation First Festival 2021





Feature Film

Josep

US Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


A touching tribute from one illustrator to another, this award-winning debut feature film by Le Monde cartoonist Aurel recounts a painful chapter of French history through the life of Catalonian artist Josep Bartolí.

Shorts

Spotlight on Florence Miailhe

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


Over the course of her three-decade career in animation, Florence Miailhe has created a small but precious body of award-winning films. Her richly picturesque films often explore subjects such as femininity, the human body, and desire.

Feature Film

Zero Impunity

NY Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


This essential documentary gives voice to victims of sexual violence across the globe. Using the courageous testimony of victims as well as interviews from journalists, academics, and political leaders, Zero Impunity is part of a global social impact movement to raise awareness of this vital issue.

Feature Film

The King and the Mockingbird

Le Roi et l'Oiseau

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 8 & up


This gem by the legendary French animator Paul Grimault—based on a tale by Hans Christian Andersen—follows a shepherdess and chimney sweep on the run from a tyrannical king with some help from a talking bird. This wildly satirical and surreal masterpiece tells of the corrupting nature of power.

Feature Film

Stinky Dog, Happy Life in Paris!

Chien pourri, la vie à Paris !

US Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 4 & up


The creators of A Town Called Panic are back with a new film featuring Chien Pourri, a naïve and filthy dog who lives in a Parisian trash can with Chaplapla, his faithful feline friend. Both adults and children will discover Paris anew from a dog’s eye level in this charming quadrupedal adventure.

Wes Anderson Selects
Feature Film

The Plague Dogs

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 10 & up


In this stunning adaptation of Richard Adams’s eponymous novel, two dogs, Snitter and Rowf, break out of a research laboratory. Once free, they meet Tod, a cunning fox, who helps them survive in the wild.

Wes Anderson Selects
TV Special

A Doonesbury Special

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021


This blast to the past based on Garry Trudeau’s popular “Doonesbury” comic strip originally aired on NBC in 1977.

TV Special

Shooom’s Odyssey

L'Odyssée de Choum

NY Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Dir. Julien Bisaro, 2019
Ages 3 & up


This heartwarming tale is set in a seaside town inspired by a lush Louisiana bayou. Born in the midst of a storm, baby owl Shooom must fend for herself and her unhatched sibling before she even leaves her nest. Against all odds, she is determined to find her mother, be it an alligator or a squirrel.

TV Special

My Life in Versailles

La vie de Château

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 8 & up


Recently orphaned, 8-year-old Violette is sent to live with her uncle Régis, who works as a groundskeeper at the Palace of Versailles. At first, Violette hates him. Régis is not keen on being her caretaker either. On the manicured grounds of Versailles and in the opulent rooms of the castle, Violette and Régis learn to trust each other.

Web Series

Fail in Love

L’Amour a ses reseaux

NY Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


Funny, quirky, and at times cruel, this web series illustrates real-life dating mishaps, fantasies, and creepy encounters. Through these personal stories, we see traditional and new means of seduction, as well as the triumphs and pitfalls caused by apps and their algorithms.

Shorts

Best of Annecy Film Festival

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

All Audiences


The Annecy International Animation Film Festival is the biggest animated film festival in the world. Straight from the 2020 edition, the first to be held on a virtual platform, this program of films includes a series of notable award-winning shorts.

Shorts

Documentary Shorts

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


These shorts, based on recorded audio interviews and other documents, show animation at its best. In their recounting of real events, the invisible is brought to light and the unspoken surfaces.

Shorts

Special Tribute: The Animated World of Paul Grimault

US Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

All Audiences


A selection of newly restored shorts open a window into the imagination of Paul Grimault, an icon of French animation. They showcase his trademark poetic style, exquisite colors, and wry wit.

Shorts

New: US & French Student Short Film Competition

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

LIVE Awards Ceremony on Sunday, February 14 at 2pm ET


The 2021 Animation First Festival is launching a new Student Competition. It brings together emerging talents from six prestigious schools in the US and France. Five films will be selected from each one of the participating schools. The 30 entries will compete for juried awards as well as an audience award. Winners will be announced at a live ceremony on Sunday, February 14 at 2pm ET.

Wes Anderson Selects
Short Film

Peter and the Wolf

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 8 & up


Unlike previous animated adaptations of this classic fairy tale, director Suzie Templeton forgoes a narrator and sets Prokofiev’s beloved score in the harsh modern-day Russian countryside. Charming, beautiful, intense, and dark, Peter and the Wolf won the 2007 Academy Award for Best Animated Short.

Shorts

New French Shorts

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

All Audiences


Straight from France, these two eclectic programs bring together films from established filmmakers as well as emerging talents. Each one opens up a unique world such as a parallel dimension or the surprisingly sensual side of PowerPoint.

Shorts

Family Friendly Shorts

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 3 & up


From enchanted worlds to coming of age themes, these shorts dazzle with an array of virtuoso techniques. Children and adults will be charmed by the use of puppets, stop motion, 2D drawings, watercolors, and pencil drawings.

Live Talk

Making of Shooom’s Odyssey

Live Conversation with Claire Paoletti and Julien Bisaro

Sunday, February 7, 2021
2pm ET

In English


Moderated by Professor Richard Neupert

Meet writer-producer Claire Paoletti and director Julien Bisaro, the creative team behind Shooom’s Odyssey, a heartwarming tale about a baby owl’s search for her mother.

Live Talk

Making of Josep

Live Conversation with Aurel, Jean-Louis Milesi, and Bernice Bromberg
Moderated by filmmaker and historian John Canemaker

Thursday, February 11, 2021
6:30pm ET

In English


Illustrator, graphic novelist, and Le Monde cartoonist Aurel will speak about his first feature film, a striking homage to illustrator Josep Bartolí. He will be joined by screenwriter Jean-Louis Milesi and Bartoli’s widow Bernice Bromberg.

Live Talk

Kristof Serrand’s Cabinet of Curiosities

Live Conversation with Kristof Serrand

Sunday, February 7, 2021
4pm ET

In English


In this wonder-filled journey through the mind of a brilliant animator, Kristof Serrand will guide us through the paintings, films, and artists that have influenced his work. After a long and storied tenure at DreamWorks, Serrand is now at Netflix.

LIVE Talk

Work In Progress:
Sirocco and the Kingdom
of the Winds

Live Conversation with Benoit Chieux
Moderated by producer, distributor and president of Gkids, David Jesteadt

Wednesday, February 10, 2021
6:30pm ET

In English


César Award–nominated Benoît Chieux discusses his much-anticipated feature film Sirocco and the Kingdom of the Winds. Two sisters embark on an unforgettable adventure when they find a secret passage and step into the extraordinary universe of their favorite book.

Live Talk

Work In Progress:
The Island

Live Conversation with Anca Damian
Moderated by Animation First co-curator Delphine Selles-Alvarez

Tuesday, February 9, 2021
6:30pm ET

In English


Anca Damian, director of 2019’s award-winning Marona’s Fantastic Tale, returns to Animation First to share her newest project, The Island, a musical comedy and “upside-down Robinson Crusoe” story set in the Mediterranean.

Talk

Making of The Crossing

Conversation with Florence Miailhe

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

In English


Acclaimed artist and animator Florence Miailhe, interviewed by Dimitri Granovsky, speaks about her soon-to-be-released debut feature film, The Crossing. The highly anticipated film tells the story of two young migrants—a brother and a sister—left to fend for themselves after their parents’ arrest.

Web Series

Women Undercover

Les Espionnes racontent

NY Premiere

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


What if 007 was a woman? This riveting series follows a journalist as she interviews the spies who penetrated top-secret government circles.

Talk

Fontevraud Residency

Conversations & Works In Progress

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

In English


Go inside one of the most desirable incubators for animated film, the International Residency for Animated Films at the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud in Loire Valley, and meet a new generation of French animators.

Online Exhibition

Interactive Graphic Novels

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021


A pair of interactive graphic novels will be available during the Festival: the environmental parable Phallaina, and Panama Al Brown: A Mysterious Force, the story of a once famous but now forgotten boxer from the 1930s.

Online Exhibition

Virtual Reality

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021


A selection of five immersive virtual reality experiences transport you to rich worlds that illuminate the past, bring great works of art to life, and open up new perspectives.

Online Exhibition

Augmented Reality

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021


Discover hidden messages in the midst of everyday life with augmented reality projects that use smartphone technology to unlock secret images.

Feature Film

Calamity Jane

Calamity, une enfance de Martha Jane Cannary

US Premiere on Opening Night

Friday, February 5, 2021, from 7pm–12am ET

Back by Popular Demand
Friday, February 12, 2021, 6pm ET to Monday, February 15, 11:45pm ET


An award-winning feminist western from director Rémi Chayé about the early life and adventures of legendary Wild West figure Martha Jane Cannary.

Feature Film

Long Way North

Tout en haut du monde

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 8 & up


Rémi Chayé’s first animated feature film, Long Way North, released in 2015, tells the tale of Sacha, an adventuresome young girl in late 19th-century Russia.

Feature Film

Aya of Yop City

Aya de Yopougon

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Ages 10 & up


This 2013 feature adapts the best-selling graphic novels by Marguerite Abouet about three teenage friends to the screen.

Shorts

Focus on African Animation

Friday, February 5–Monday, February 15, 2021

Mature Audiences


This program of shorts brings together filmmakers from Ghana, Tunisia, Madagascar, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Burkina Faso by way of Canada, showcasing the diverse storytelling and multifaceted filmmaking techniques across the continent.

Live Talk

Making of Calamity Jane

Live Conversation with Rémi Chayé
Moderated by filmmaker and professor Hsiang Chin Moe

Saturday, February 6, 2021
2pm ET

In English


Animation First opens with a bang with the US premiere of Calamity Jane, a feminist western about the early life of the legendary Wild West figure Martha Jane Cannary. Only available on opening night, the film will be followed the next day by a special behind-the-scenes discussion with director Rémi Chayé.

Wes Anderson Selects
Feature Film

Bambi

Rarely Screened Hindi- and French-dubbed Versions

Friday, February 12, 2021 at 6pm ET–Sunday, February 14, 2021 at 6pm ET

Ages 5 & up


Wes Anderson’s selection of the rarely screened Hindi- and French-dubbed versions of Bambi lends a quirky twist to this classic tale. Disney’s quintessential masterpiece remains as beautiful and timely as ever, one of the first environmental films and a poignant commentary against violence.

Feature Film

Isle of Dogs

New Schedule: Friday, February 12, 2021 at 7:30pm ET–Sunday, February 14, 2021 at 7:30pm ET

Rated PG-13


Set in Japan, Isle of Dogs, follows a young boy’s epic journey in search of his lost dog. Wes Anderson’s second feature-length animated film, this charming stop-motion sci-fi was nominated for an Oscar, a Golden Globe, and a BAFTA.

Live Talk

Why the World Needs Animation

Live Panel Discussion with Animation Professionals

Saturday, February 13, 2021
4pm ET

In English


Join New York Tech and Animation First for a spirited discussion on the role of animation in our society.

 

Get the $20 Festival Pass to enjoy access to the entire Animation First 2021 program including all feature films, shorts, talks, and more.