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As part of their centenary celebrations in South Africa, the Japanese Embassy and Consulate in Cape Town have partnered with the CTIAF for a second year. President and CEO of Polygon Pictures John Shuzo Shiota returns to join the speaker line up and there will be screenings of Japanese animated film Mary and the Witch’s Flower directed by Academy Award nominated animator Yonebayashi Hiromasa. John Shuzo Shiota participated in the launch of Dream Pictures Studio in 1997 before he moved to Polygon Pictures two years later. In 2003 he took up the position of President and CEO. The company has since enjoyed exponential growth as the premier digital animation studio in Asia, winning many accolades including multiple Emmy Awards.
Directed by Academy Award nominated animator Yonebayashi Hiromasa Mary and the Witch’s Flower is the first animated film from Studio Ponoc. A strange flower grants a young girl magical powers, which leads to the adventure of a lifetime. PG rating. It will be screened on Friday 2 March at 20h00.
There will also be a live link up with Tomoya Imai, Managing Director of Narra no ki Inc, who will be appearing virtually via Adobe Connect. Imai has been working in the art department for 15 years, and 12 years as a Production Designer. He’s been based in Tokyo and in Los Angeles, designing more than 1,000 projects including commercial clips, music videos, award winning feature films, acclaimed animated features, TV series, and a remarkable number of architectural projects.
“The Embassy of Japan/ Consulate in Cape Town is pleased to have its second partnership with the Cape Town International Animation Festival in 2018. The 2018 partnership is special because it is our centenary year, as the Office of Consul of Japan in Cape Town was established in 1918 as the first overseas mission of the Japanese Government on the African Continent. The Japanese Embassy/Consulate in Cape Town intends to bring Japan closer to Capetonians with our Centenary Celebrations and one way of doing so is through Animation and Manga, which are popular art forms in Japan. Japan has made many advancements in the field and numerous masterpieces and artistic/technological innovations are constantly impacting and influencing Animation and Manga worldwide,” says Yasushi Naito, Consul of Japan Cape Town.
“We are happy to announce that a South African Manga artist group has won the Bronze medal at the 11th Japan International Manga Award. The handing over ceremony of the award will take place at the CTIAF 2018. The award-winning piece is a pictorial story of the life of Nelson Mandela titled “Mandela” created by Umlando Wezithombe under the Nelson Mandela Foundation. It is a happy coincidence that this group from South Africa won this very competitive award in the year of the Mandela Centenary, a first for animators from Southern Africa. We look forward to many more collaborations in the field of Manga and Animation with Japan in coming years,” says Naito.
President and CEO of Polygon Pictures John Shuzo Shiota will also take part in the CTIAF’s Outreach programme, talking to learners at the Isivivana Centre in Khayelitsha. The group will be welcomed by Yasushi Naito, Consul of Japan Cape Town.
The CTIAF has become a significant fixture on the international festival calendar as a marketplace for the fast-growing and internationally acclaimed African animation industry. The Festival also hosts live drawing classes, business-to-business sessions, producer events, networking opportunities and government panel discussions in addition to student competitions and an outreach programme.
The CTIAF is proudly presented by Animation SA and is made possible thanks to generous support from sponsors the Department of Arts and Culture, the City of Cape Town, Wesgro, Nickelodeon, the High Commission of Canada, The Japanese Embassy and Consulate in Cape Town and the French Institute of South Africa. CTIAF has also partnered with Annecy International Animated Film Festival and Animate Africa.
The Cape Town International Animation Festival takes place from 2 to 4 March 2018 at The River Club in Observatory, Cape Town. Visit www.ctiaf.com for the full programme details.
Screenings are free. A full Festival pass (valid 2 to 4 March) costs R100 for ASA members, R250 for students and R500 for a full Festival pass. A day pass costs R350 (tickets include all events). Bookings can be made at Webtickets www.webtickets.co.za
Join the CTIAF on Facebook www.facebook.com/CTInternationalAnimationFest and Twitter @CTanimationfest