Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Anima Festival in Brussels

I've just returned from an extended trip to Europe, 2 stops to publicize "Cheatin'".  It's very important for me to go to Europe, because here in the U.S., it's more difficult to get distribution for an independent, hand-drawn, adult animated film.  So I have to go where my audience is.

My first stop was the great Anima Festival in Brussels, Belgium.  I've been going there since about 1988, and I've always seen great films and had a lot of fun.  I have a lot of fans there because Brussels, as you probably know, is one of the hotbeds of comics (The Smurfs and Tintin).

                                                            Bill's Master Class at Anima

While at Anima, I gave a Master Class, with a drawing demonstration, and screened some of my most recent projects.

But I was also there to check up on my competition.  Anima is one of the best showcases for animated features, for both kids and adults.  Although I was only there for 3 days this time, so I was only able to see one feature: "Lou Lou's Incredible Secret" by Eric Omond, adapted from a very successful book.  I loved the style a lot, but I had difficulty following the story - my French is not so good.

While I was there, the Oscars took place in the U.S.  I was surprised that "Mr. Hublot" won the Oscar for Best Animated Short - I loved the film, but I thought "Get a Horse" from Disney would win.  So much for the Oscar being bought...

As for the animated feature category, "Frozen" was a lock - it was such a popular film and made so much money.  It was no surprise, however it sure would have been great if "Ernest and Celestine" had won.

Speaking of winning, "Cheatin'" won the BeTV award for Best Animated Feature at Anima!  

                                         signing artwork for the crowds at Anima in Brussels

Next, I moved on to Paris, where I did publicity for "Cheatin'", or as it's called there, "Les Amants Electrique".

--Bill P.

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