Fri, Oct 26, 2018 - Page 4 News List

Delegation learns from Tokyo festival

DRAWING UP PLANS:Japan’s animation industry is mostly composed of smaller enterprises, so the festival provides a platform to showcase people’s creativity

By Chang Ching-ya and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Taichung Deputy Mayor Chang Kuang-yao, right, presents a booklet for the Taichung International Animation Festival to Tokyo Anime Award Festival director Takeuchi Koji in Tokyo on Wednesday.

Photo courtesy of the Taichung City Government

Taichung Deputy Mayor Chang Kuang-yao (張光瑤) yesterday led a delegation to Japan to seek advice on how to develop the Taichung International Animation Festival.

The delegation visited the Association of Japanese Animation and was received by the director of the association’s annual Tokyo Anime Award Festival, Takeuchi Koji.

Taichung’s festival — now in its fourth year — is the only city-hosted film festival for animation in Taiwan, Chang said.

The Taiwanese film On Happiness Road (幸福路上), produced with help from the Taichung Information Bureau, won the grand prize in the feature film category at the Tokyo festival, Chang said.

Chang said he hopes their visit will foster more opportunities for collaboration to develop the festival and the local animation industry.

While the animation industry in Japan is flourishing, the majority of production companies are small to medium-sized businesses, which is why the association is consolidating resources to host the Tokyo festival, Koji said.

By promoting excellent animation from the domestic market and abroad, the association is providing a platform on which young people interested in pursuing careers in animation can display their creativity, Koji said.

The Tokyo festival critiques every entry based on its creativity, novelty, ability to achieve resonance with a general audience and use of technology, Koji said.

“We make our decision based also on what the Japanese animation industry was, how it is now and where we envision it will go,” Koji said.

Judges include people not only from Japan, but also other parts of Asia, Europe and the Americas, Koji said.

Winning a top award at the festival not only helps raise a filmmaker’s profile, but also allows their piece to be shown publicly in Japan, Koji said, citing unspecified statistics.

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