Irish Animation is in the spotlight at world’s most prestigious animation festival in Annecy, with four projects in Official Selection including the popular TV series’ Octonauts, Wildernuts, the feature documentary film Last Hijack and the short film The Missing Scarf.

Meanwhile Irish animation producers will be wheeling and dealing at the festival’s animation market MIFA, selling new titles to international territories and raising international finance for new projects in development, with the aim to green light more major projects for production in Ireland.

The animated TV series Wildernuts, directed by Andrew Kavanagh, and Octonauts, directed by Nicky Phelan, and ‘Last Hijack’ are all selected for Official Competition. The award winning short film The Missing Scarf will screen out of competition.

Wildernuts is directed by Andrew Kavanagh and produced by Kavaleer Productions with support from Bord Scannan na hEireann/the Irish Film Board, RTE and the BAI. The series is focused on a lively crew led by the intrepid leader, Cap’n Quilty. This fun-loving team navigate the skies above their island home on their flying ship, the Cloudhopper.

Octonauts episode “The Octonauts and the Mariana Trench Adventure”, directed by Academy Award nominee Nicky Phelan, has also been selected for official competition. The series is based around a crew of eight adorable animals who explore the ocean in search of adventure and fun. Octonauts is produced in Ireland by Brown Bag Films for Chorion and premiered on CBeebies in October 2010 where it became an instant hit with pre-school audiences. The show, which is both Emmy and BAFTA nominated is now in its second season. Director Nicky Phelan previously directed the multi-award winning short film Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty.

Animated in Ireland, the fascinating feature documentary co-production Last Hijack, will screen in the Feature Film Competition section. Produced by Submarine in the Netherlands, Irish company Still Films were co-producers on this project and all of the animation on this this film was completed in Piranha Bar in Dublin.

The Missing Scarf, narrated by Star Trek’s George Takei, is a black comedy that explores some of life’s common fears: the fear of the unknown, of failure, rejection and finally of death. This short film won Best Animation at the New Hampshire Film Festival in the US and Best European Short Film at the Seminci Valladolid International Film Festival in Spain. It is also officially nominated for Best European Short Film at the European Film Awards 2014.

Awards will be announced on Saturday June 14th. The festival & market take place this week from June 10th-15th.

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