Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival’s Program Out

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Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival

Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival

The fourth edition of the Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival has announced the release of its official program for 2012.

This year, the festival will be taking place from October 19 to 21 in the J.A. de Sève Theater at Concordia University (1453 Mackay Street, Montreal).

The Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival is the “Ultimate Stop Motion Week-end.” The festival is the first in the world to showcase Stop Motion. The top-notch selection of exceptional films presented during this weekend-long event proves once again that a huge revival for stop-motion animation is currently taking the animation world by storm.

This year’s program has something for everyone. Along with the official film selection, talks and guest artists, the festival is also offering two free family screenings, presented by Mega Bloks, and hands-on pods with the Stop Motion Pro software so that young animators can discover the magic of animation on site.

Opening Night: Special guest speaker Mark Shapiro
7:30 p.m. Friday, October 19
The Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival is very pleased to announce that Mark Shapiro from LAIKA will be at this year’s Festival. Shapiro will be joining the festival to talk about the “making of” the handcrafted stop-motion film ParaNorman and will provide a behind-the-scenes look at LAIKA’s latest feature.

With time-lapse imagery and behind-the-scenes footage, Shapiro will describe the major undertaking involved in the making of this remarkable animated film. And, as a special treat, Norman himself will be part of the visit alongside the famous Coraline. This is a great opportunity to see the meticulous work done inside LAIKA’s studios up close.

The official film selection
More than 70 stop-motion films from 20 countries will be presented on the big screen. The jury will select a winner in each of the competitive categories:
Academic films 1: 1 p.m. Saturday, October 20 (PG-13)
Academic films 2: 1 p.m. Sunday, October 21 (PG-13)
Independent films: 4 p.m. Saturday, October 20
Professional films: 7:30 p.m. Sunday, October 21 (PG-13)
The jury is composed of three members of the stop motion community: Mark Shapiro, Merlin Crossingham and Chris Walsh. The winners will be announced on Sunday evening, the closing night of the festival.

Other activities not to be missed

7:30 p.m. Saturday, October 20
Special presentation: Merlin Crossingham, creative director of Wallace and Gromit
It’s not every day that Wallace and Gromit cross the Atlantic and visit Montreal, but, with the help of Crossingham, the trip will be a lot easier as they land at the Montreal Stop Motion Film Festival.

Crossingham will share about the highlights of his career in stop-motion from how he got into it all the way to his work with top-flight studios. He will also share his insight into Aardman Animations’ studio and how it adapts to work in different areas of animation production and on films of different lengths.
The highlight of the event is sure to be Crossingham’s talk about how he creates character animations — from first concept to final performance.
And to illustrate, he will be bringing along a selection of puppets, including Wallace and Gromit!

4 p.m. Sunday, October 21
Seminar with Chris Walsh, independent animator and teacher at Sheridan College
Walsh is a filmmaker, professor and business owner, which allows him to better serve the medium of stop motion animation. In this presentation, which will include both film and images, Walsh will chart his path through the medium. It’s a path that involves lunar eclipses, Ray Harryhausen, training in a haunted “stop-motion monastery,” exhilarating plunges into the depths of human consciousness, Jan Svankmajer, and frame-by-frame monsters.

Free screenings for the whole family
Presented by Mega Bloks
11 a.m. to 12 noon Saturday, October 20 and Sunday, October 21
The festival will be holding two free family screenings. The whole family will have the opportunity to enjoy stop-motion animation from around the world. These projections are a selection of films from the official competition lineup.

Hands-on sessions
Presented by Stop Motion Pro
12 noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, October 20 and Sunday, October 21
The festival will have “hands-on” sessions on Saturday and Sunday where animators can get better acquainted with the Stop Motion Pro software while animating construction toys from Mega Bloks. With animators on site, artists and enthusiasts will be able to try their hands at stop-motion animation.

Adults: $10 per session
Children (12 years and under): $5 per session
VIP Pass: $50
The VIP Pass, which gives access to all sessions, will be on sale at in limited quantity. Tickets will be available for purchase at the door before each screening.

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