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Dutch Animation At Annecy 2020

Three brilliant and creative Dutch productions are selected for the online Annecy Animation Film Festival (15-30 June) and associated industry market MIFA (15-19 June).

In TV Films in Competition is The Hospital episode from director Hisko Hulsing's ground-breaking 8 x 23-minute Amazon series Undone, produced by The Tornante Company (US) and co-produced by Submarine (Netherlands) and Minnow Mountain (US).

While recovering in hospital from her car accident, Alma talks with her dead father, who makes a confusing yet compelling request. The episode, written by showrunners Kate Purdy and Raphael Bob-Waksberg, is shocking, dramatic, jarring and funny in equal measure as we are taken on a surreal journey through Alma's memories and subconscious.

As in previous Hulsing films, such as Junkyard (2012) and Montage of Heck (2015), for which he created the animated sequences), the rotoscope animation is set against a series of beautiful and expressive oil-painted backdrops.

"Matching those techniques with 3D and projection mapping creates this kind of new style," says the director of the film's stunning visuals. Undone was made by a large team of artists in Amsterdam, Austin and Los Angeles. The series was supported by the Netherlands Production Incentive.

Wiebe Bonnema's The End is selected for Graduate Short Films in Competition section

In the short film, inspired by animated sequences from the ‘spaghetti westerns' of Sergio Leone and others, we continue to follow a cowboy on his final journey into the empty nothingness of the desert, after he rides out of the town he just saved. Even after the words The End have shown on screen...

"It is one of my favourite western movie clichés, when the guy just rides away into an empty landscape. I find it a most beautiful image, so romantic," says the young filmmaker.

The 2D, 4 minute 36 seconds animation is produced by Artez University of the Arts.

The 2D short music film Careful by Alice Saey competes in the Commissioned Films in Competition section

On the borderless map of a magical planet, little beings pick, brush, weave, fish and collect elements from their natural environment to sustain their life as a group. This essential balance turns to chaos once they misuse their findings to polish their individual appearance.

Careful is a music video commissioned by musician Jo Goes Hunting. "Usually he does quite poppy songs with a classical structure but with original textures, but this song really stood out for me because it is weird and it has an odd structure and quite abstract lyrics, and it really builds upon a repetition that creates a kind of hypnosis," says Saey.

The director is French but lives half the time in Rotterdam, where she shares an animation studio with Nienke Deutz who was hired to help animate Careful along with Daan Faudet and Wiep Teeuwisse.

In 2018 Saey received the Jury Award for a Commissioned Film at Annecy for her music video Happy for Mark Lotterman (also a Dutch musician). Colleagues Nienke and Wiep have also won awards at Annecy. Nienke won the Crystal Prize for Best Short Film in 2018 for Bloeistraat 11 (Belgium/The Netherlands). Wiep won the Annecy Cristal for a Graduation Film (2016) for Depart at 22.

Saey's new film Flatastic, a French/Dutch production, will be presented at Annecy's associated MIFA market. Once again Miyu is the French partner while Keplerfilm is the Dutch partner. Supported by the Netherlands Film Fund, the new work will go into production in October 2020.

Come visit us at MIFA ONLINE: V.026 SEE NL - The Netherlands.