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4th July 2024

Annecy International Animated Film Festival 2024

This June, I had the pleasure of representing Silver Agency at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival – the world’s largest animation festival which had 17,400 accredited badge holders this year. Annecy has always been about bringing creatives together from all over the world to explore new technologies, build connections with other creatives and, for me, to bring inspiration back to share with the rest of Silver’s Motion Team.

This is my third year attending and here a few key takeaways of mine from this year’s festival.

Now showing on…Netflix

Each year I have attended the festival, there has always been a big Netflix release happening. This year I was able to attend the Next on Netflix panel, which reveals sneak peaks of upcoming films. There were many great previews, however the one that stood out the most was the return of the much-loved characters Wallace & Gromit in the new Aardman film, Vengeance Most Foul. This classic British stop-motion film franchise has been around since 1989, which got me wondering about the releases of previous film franchises.

With the growth of Netflix since its foundation in 1997 – and the growth of other streaming services – movies have tended to focus less on big cinema or national television releases. The last installation of this franchise, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, grossed US$192.6 million at the box office back in 2005, however their newest venture is being launched on Netflix. I believe this is because, for the cost of a cinema movie ticket, you can pay for a month’s access to Netflix and watch unlimited movies from your home.

2024 Women in Animation World Summit

Women in Animation (WIA) is an organisation established in 1993 to support the small number of women in the animation field. WIA returned to Annecy and, having previously gone to their panels in 2022, I knew they would do a brilliant job yet again. Their mission is to empower and advocate for people of underrepresented gender identities, bringing together the global animation community.

This year, WIA introduced World Summit as an annual, day-long symposium of panels focusing on the theme ‘Stronger Together: The Equitable Future of Animation’. The panels discuss issues they’ve found within the animation industry, usually ones aligned to the WIA mission, and hear advice from experts on how to tackle these issues. One of the panels taking place talked about the positives and negatives of AI. The panel shared that 79% of US media and entertainment decision makers indicated in a survey that their company was either exploring, testing or actively deploying generative AI in some access of their business. The panel was amazing and covered many different technology-related problems.

My key takeaway from this was Julie Ann Crommett’s comment that said, “AI is like the internet. It brings us the good and brings us the bad of humanity, and we have an active decision to make on what we’re going to do with it.”

Even bigger, even better.

There was an increase in the numbers attending Annecy this year and the busiest I have ever seen it – with lots of people I spoke attending for the first time ever. The increase in attendees means more events were held and more countries were represented than ever before, allowing Annecy to grow further, continue to invite more people year-on-year and display more, different animation styles.

This year we saw the premier of Pakistan’s first hand-drawn, animated, feature film, The Glassworker. This year’s theme was to pay tribute to Portugal, shining a spotlight on the innovation and talents in the field of animation. There were 125,000 total entries to the festival, 103 countries represented, with 5 countries new this year!

A festival to remember

Annecy is a truly indescribable place where the atmosphere, people you meet and the events you go to are just incredible. Even if you are not a creative or in the animation/film industry, I would still highly recommend going as I guarantee you will have the time of your life. I am truly so lucky to have represented Silver this year and cannot wait to share everything I learned with the team.