Written and directed by Jonas Poher Rasmussen, “Flee” follows the story of Awin Nawabi, an Afghan refugee who is suddenly forced to face the shattering effects of a secret he has kept for 20 years. Neon and Participant distribute the film.
“In the moving and innovative documentary ‘Flee’, Jonas Poher Rasmussen takes great care to share the personal story of an Afghan refugee. The filmmaker uses the animation process to protect his subject’s identity, while also adding an extra layer to the material, capturing the impact of trauma on memory and identity in the process, ”said jury president and Variety chief film critic Peter Debruge.
The special jury prize was awarded to “Belle”. Writer-director Mamoru Hosuda’s film tells the story of a 17-year-old high school student. GKIDS manages the national distribution of films in theaters.
“With extraordinary visual imagination and technical skills, Mamoru Hosoda reinvents the classic Beauty and the Beast story for this century. In her tale, a teenage girl Belle finds her voice and takes a stand on an important social issue,” commented Debruge.
The Audience Award went to “The Crossing,” which follows a couple of children separated from their parents and forced to face the world on their own. Florence Miailhe directs.
The Animation Is Film Festival was held October 22-24 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theaters in Hollywood. The event featured a program of 12 animated feature films in competition, with entries from around the world.
“At a time when audiences from around the world are still returning to theaters, we were positively amazed by the constant buzz of enthusiasm displayed this weekend at Animation Is Film,” FIA Director Matt Kaszanek said in a statement. “With sold-out screenings every day of the festival, Los Angeles has once again established itself as the epicenter of film and animation lovers. We were so happy to see everyone again.
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