Monday, April 15, 2019

Cartoons on the Bay, Torino, Italy

I was very happy to be invited to the Cartoons on the Bay Festival last week to receive the prestigious Pulcinella Award for lifetime achievement.  Also receiving an award was the great Michel Ocelot.

Receiving the Pulcinella Award
Unfortunately, the weather was wet and rainy, but happily, this helped make my Master Class a big hit.  I had a packed, standing-room-only audience.

Lucca Raffaeli, the famed animation and comics historian, took a few of us VIPs, including my Italian producer friend, Marco Milone, to the famed Museum of Cinema, just a few blocks from our hotel.  It is a spectacular piece of architecture, very similar to the Eiffel Tower.

The tower part is called "The Mole Antonelliana", which was a decorative structure build on top of the original Jewish temple in 1877.  It's quite remarkable, because the whole inside of the structure is hollow, so you can see up to the very top.  In fact, they have a free-hanging elevator that takes you up to the top for a magnificent view.  Then, like the Guggenheim Museum in NYC, you can walk along a spiral path down to the bottom, looking at an exhibition called "Comics to Film", with pieces from Winsor McKay and Tim Burton's "Batman".

They have quite an extensive exhibition on the pre-history of cinema and then the very early years of cinema - Edison, Méliès, Lumiere.  They say it's the largest museum of cinema anywhere in the world.  In fact, Torino was where Italian cinema production began and it's still a center for filmmaking.

With the great animator Bruno Bozzetto!

The name of this film festival doesn't make much sense, because there is no bay nearby - Torino is right next to the Alps.  However, the festival began years ago in the beautiful harbor village of Positano - but they eventually moved it to Torino because of the cinematic history of the town.

I want to thank RAI TV and the entire staff at the Cartoons on the Bay festival for a great time.

If you have a new film that you want to show at a festival, definitely submit it to Cartoons on the Bay!  Enjoy this week's gag cartoon, and I'll talk to you next week!

--Bill Plympton

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