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Ottawa International Animation Festival

Ottawa is Canada’s capital and has perfected the art of holding an exciting festival. It covers almost every interest across the year, music, flowers and outdoor parties. One of the premier events is the Ottawa International Animation Festival (OIAF), designed specifically for lovers of the animation film genre. OIAF is one of the world’s leading competitive animation events. It provides screenings, exhibits, workshops and entertainment.

Animation is an arena in which Canadian’s excel. Started in 1976, the festival was nurtured by Ottawa’s animation community, growing into the respected festival it is today. The festival was the idea of animator Bill Kuhns. The National Film Board of Canada, Radio Canada, CBC Television, and Cinémathèque Québécoise, all contributed to establishing OIAF as North America’s largest animation festival. Over 5 days, audiences can view the edgiest, experimental and thrilling animation created during the year. Many of the competition winners go on to receive Academy Award nominations. Examples include Luxo Jr. in 1987 and Nick Park’s Wallace and Gromit: The Wrong Trousers.

OIAF moved from a biennial to an annual event in 2005. The yearly edition of the OIAF now has an annual attendance of approximately 28,000 from animation artists to producers, and the all-important animation fans. Canada’s capital was the ideal choice for an international animation festival. Home to animation visionary Norman McLaren, the first festival honorary president, it was the base for some of Canada’s first private animation studios. OIAF receives a massive 2000 entries a year for the Official Competition, whittled down to 100 films, from around the globe. It also features outstanding animated films in the Showcase programs. The base for the festival is Downtown Rideau, a mecca for shopping and art lovers. It is an Ottawa neighbourhood full of trendy retail outlets, fine restaurants, and charming theatres. The area contains the hub of cultural activity in the Retail, Arts & Theatre District. OIAF is held at a variety of locations across Downtown, including Arts Court and Château Laurier.

OIAF Grand Prize winners:

  • 2014 – Seth’s Dominion
  • 2013 – Lonely Bones
  • 2012 – Junkyard
  • 2011 – Moxie
  • 2010 – The External World
  • 2009 – Mary and Max
  • 2008 – Chainsaw
  • 2007 – A Country Doctor
  • 2006 – Dreams & Desires: Family Ties
  • 2005 – Milch
  • 2004 – Ryan

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