By Jay Forte, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The international animated film festival known as Anima Mundi has returned to Rio de Janeiro for the 26th edition since Saturday, July 21st, bringing 576 short and feature films. The event runs in Rio until Sunday, July 29th, before moving on to São Paulo.
There will be 108 Brazilian productions, and films from around forty countries in this year’s edition, which will be attended by Brazilian director of animation Carlos Saldanha, of films such as The Ice Age and Rio. The director will be presenting awards to animation students who participate in the competitive segment of the festival.
Counting on the special shows, guest films and retrospectives, the number of titles reaches 576, of the diverse themes, techniques and origins. The curators are the animators, Aída Queiroz, Cesar Coelho, Léa Zagury and Marcos Magalhães, directors and founders of the festival.
According to the festival organizers, each selection is a surprise and brings a mix of films from different genres, such as fables, dramas, comedies, documentaries, horror and suspense.
Four children’s films and three adults stand out in the competition. For children, The Snow Queen 3: Fire and Ice, comedy by director Aleksey Tsitsilin (Russia), El Angel en el Reloj by Mexican director Miguel Ángel Uriegas, and Ploey: You Never Fly Alone, a co-production between Iceland and Belgium, directed by Árni Ásgeirsson.
Outside of the competition, the highlights are Isle of Dogs, Wes Anderson’s new film with the participation of the Brazilian animator Matias Liebrecht, who will present special sessions in Rio and São Paulo; and the award-winning Spanish pro Pos Eso, by Samuel Ortí Martí.
The festival’s 26th edition attractions are located in areas in Centro such as the Cine Odeon, Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, Casa França Brasil and the Centro Cultural dos Correios, and include workshops and sessions at accessible prices and even free.
The director of the festival, Mauro Magalhães, gave an interview to the program Arte Clube, Radio MEC, in which he said that the festival followed the trend of record breaking participation of national Brazilian productions this year.
“The festival exists for this, to foster the creation of an animation industry and an environment that increasingly inserts animation into Brazilian culture, and this is happening,” he said.
One of the highlights of this year’s edition is the exhibition of productions that involve virtual reality, inserting the viewer into the film scenes. “This is a strong audiovisual trend, putting the person inside the experience and having a path to walk and interact with the characters,” said Mauro Magalhães.
Anima Mundi continues in São Paulo on August 1st. In the city of São Paulo, the event will be held at the Memorial of Latin America.
What: 26th Anima Mundi, International Animation Film Festival
When: July 21st – Sunday, July 29th, screening and event times vary.
Where: See website for locations
Entrance: Event and screening prices vary