A drawing of a young boy with an oversized head, a character from BLA BLA, an interactive website produced by Vincent Morisset in 2011.

Press Releases & Media Kits

Animafest Zagreb selects 11 NFB films, 3 for the official competition

Press release


Montreal, May 28, 2012 – Three NFB titles will be in the Grand Competition at Animafest Zagreb: Here and the Great Elsewhere (NFB), directed by Michèle Lemieux, Edmond Was a Donkey ( Papy3D Productions| ARTE France|NFB), directed by Franck Dion, and Romance ( Studio GDS|NFB), directed by Georges Schwizgebel. These shorts head up a strong selection of NFB films that includes five titles screening in the Grand Panorama section and three in the festival’s Films for Children competition. In addition, NFB producer Marc Bertrand will be a member of the jury for the Student Competition.

Animafest Zagreb was founded in 1972 and has since gone on to become one of the world’s top festivals devoted to animated film. To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the festival will be screening all of the films that have won its Grand Prize—including the NFB’s When the Day Breaks, directed by Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis, which took the top prize in 2000.

Here and the Great Elsewhere, which has its international premiere at the festival, is the second film from noted illustrator Michèle Lemieux, and is produced by Julie Roy. It is a deep yet playful philosophical meditation created using the Alexeïeff-Parker pinscreen—a legendary device consisting of a screen with 250,000 pins. The pinscreen with which Lemieux worked was acquired by the NFB in 1973 and is the only working model of its kind in the world.

Directed by Franck Dion, Edmond Was a Donkey is co-produced with the French studio Papy3D and the ARTE network. The film, whose Zagreb screening is a world premiere, tells the touching story of an outsider, illustrating the challenges of being true to oneself in a world filled with social conformists. It is produced by Franck Dion, Richard Van Den Boom and Julie Roy.

Romance, directed by Georges Schwizgebel, is a co-production with Swiss studio GDS. A dreamlike and turbulent love story set to Rachmaninoff's Sonata for Cello and Piano, Op. 19, the film won best animated short at the 32nd annual Genie Awards. It is produced by Marc Bertrand, René Chénier and Georges Schwizgebel.

The 26 films screening in the Grand Panorama section of the festival include the two NFB productions nominated for Oscars this year— Sunday, directed by Patrick Doyon, and Wild Life, directed by Amanda Forbis and Wendy Tilby—as well as the NFB co-productions Kali the Little Vampire, directed by Regina Pessoa, Muybridge’s Strings, directed by Koji Yamamura, and Paula, directed by Dominic-Étienne Simard.

Finally, the co-production Bonifacio in Summertime, directed by Pierre-Luc Granjon and Antoine Lanciaux, screens in the festival’s Films for Children competition, along with Jonathan Wright’s The Bear Facts, and Private Eyes, directed by Nicola Lemay.

About the NFB

Canada’s public producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada creates interactive works, social-issue documentaries and auteur animation that provide the world with a unique Canadian perspective. The NFB is developing the entertainment forms of the future in groundbreaking interactive productions, while pioneering new directions in 3D stereoscopic film, community-based media, and more. It works in collaboration with emerging and established filmmakers, digital media creators and co-producers in every region of Canada, with Aboriginal and culturally diverse communities, as well as partners around the world. Since the NFB’s founding in 1939, it has created over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 6 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies. Over 2,000 NFB productions can be streamed online, at the NFB.ca Screening Room as well as via partnerships with the world’s leading video portals, while the NFB’s growing family of apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV delivers the experience of cinema to Canadians everywhere.

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Nadine Viau, NFB Publicist
Phone: 514-496-4486
Cell: 514-458-9745
E-mail: n.viau@nfb.ca

Lily Robert, Director, Corporate Communications, NFB
Phone: 514-283-3838
Cell: 514-296-8261
E-mail: l.robert@nfb.ca