New Czech animation festival premieres


The Czech Republic will see two animation film festivals competing for attention in the upcoming weeks: Anifest, which moved to the town of Teplice, and Anifilm, which has been newly inaugurated in the former Anifest home town of Trebon.

Anifilm (www.anifilm.cz) takes place April 28 - May 5, the traditional former dates of Anifest (www.anifest.cz). The decision to move the older festival to a larger city was a major blow to the picturesque South Bohemian spa town. The regional government and town mayor stepped in to assure that the town would once again host an event that had become a source of pride. The first edition will feature a competition of Czech and Slovak feature films in three categories: student films, TV films, and auteur films. Special sections will be dedicated to French films, presented in collaboration with the Anency festival of animated films, and a focus on films from Canadian director Jacques Drouin made in cooperation with veteran Czech animator Břetislav Pojar.

Anifest takes place two weeks later,May 18-23. Its specials will include a retrospective on Lithuanian animation. Just preceding the festival, on May 17 and 18, the festival will host a conference in honor of the 100th anniversary of renouned Czech filmmaker Karel Zeman entitled "Karel Zeman -- Cinema of Wonders." Anifest will continue to hold an international competition of animated films as well as a competition of video clips.