Siggraph Asia Virtual 2020 promises a collection of best works

Siggraph Asia Virtual 2020 promises the showcase of world-wide collection of the year in the field of Animation and Computer Graphics industry. The Virtual conference will showcase the best of this year’s works, presented by the creators, who will share their insights and discuss their most innovative projects and experiences with computer-generated animation and visual effects. From students’ works to professional pieces, the event provides you with evolving visual technology and artistic stimulations.

CAF will take you on a tour of the full breadth of this year’s most innovative and inspirational work in computer animation. From 577 submitted works, 22 films have been selected for the Animation Theater program, which will be accessible for viewing from 4-13 December on the virtual events platform.

CAF Panel & Production Talks includes presentations by experts in the creation of computer animation and visual effects, as well as disclosures from behind-the-scenes of studios and schools, whose works are screened at the festival.

This year’s CAF Panel & Production Talks includes:

The Making of Pixar’s Wind 

Jesus Martinez, Animation Manager, Pixar Animation Studios

Edwin Chang, Shot Supervisor / SparkShorts Director, Wind, Pixar Animation Studios

Beth Albright, Character Shading and Groom Lead, Pixar Animation Studios:

Join writer and director Edwin Chang, producer Jesús Martínez and supervising technical director Beth Albright as they explore the making of their heartfelt CG animated short film, Wind. Made as part of Pixar’s SparkShorts program, Wind is set in a world of magical realism where a grandmother and her grandson are trapped deep down an endless chasm, scavenging debris that surrounds them to realize their dream of escaping to a better life. A screening of the film will be followed by a “Making Of” presentation and a Q&A.

Producing Over the Moon 

Gennie Rim, Executive Producer, Glen Keane Productions

Peilin Chou, Animation Film Producer, Netflix:

Producers Peilin Chou and Gennie Rim discuss the development and production of the recently premiered Netflix and Pearl Studios animated musical adventure, Over the Moon, directed by the legendary Oscar winner Glen Keane, and co-directed by Oscar winner John Kahrs. In the film, a bright young girl fueled with determination and a passion for science, Fei Fei, builds a rocket ship to the moon to prove the existence of the legendary Chinese Moon Goddess, Chang’e. After an impossible journey, she ends up in a whimsical land of fantastical creatures. Directed by Keane, animated at Sony Pictures Imageworks and produced by Rim and Chou for Shanghai-based Pearl Studios, Over the Moon is a musical adventure about moving forward, embracing the unexpected, and believing the impossible is possible. And, it has a rabbit in a space suit. Nuff said!

The Making of Wolfwalkers 

Ross Stewart, Painter, Illustrator, Designer, Animation Director and Art Director, Cartoon Saloon Tomm Moore, Co-founder and Creative Director, Cartoon Saloon:

Two-time Oscar-nominated director Tomm Moore (Song of the Sea, The Secret of Kells) and director Ross Stewart (The Secret of Kells) will share creative insights into the making of their latest animated feature film, Wolfwalkers, which premieres worldwide December 11 on Apple TV+. Set in the middle of the 17th century, Wolfwalkers follows the fortunes of young hunter Robyn Goodfellow (Honor Kneafsey) as she joins her father on a mission to destroy Ireland’s last wolf pack. Joining forces with feisty Mebh MacTire (Eva Whittaker), Robyn soon learns her new friend is a member of a pack of shapeshifting werewolves. As she delves deeper into their world of superstition and magic, Robyn risks becoming the prey in her father’s lethal quest. The film is co-produced by the award-winning animation studios Cartoon Saloon and Melusine Productions.

Titmouse – Trailblazers in Innovative 2D/CG Animation 

Chris Prynoski, Founder and President, Titmouse

Chris Prynoski, known throughout the animation community as Chris P., is the founder and president of Titmouse, one of the most prolific, independent, Emmy Award-winning animation studios in business today, leading the charge in support of unprecedented and explosive growth in episodic 2D/CG animation. Just a few of the hugely popular shows they produce are Big Mouth, Star Trek: Lower Decks, Bless the Harts, The Midnight Gospel, and Tigtone. The animation industry’s tremendous production expansion is not just fueled by traditional broadcasters like FOX, Cartoon Network / Adult Swim and Nickelodeon, but by leading streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon, and HBO Max, as well as more niche streamers like Crunchyroll and Syfy’s adult animation block, TZGZ. And the medium of 2D/CG provides an almost unlimited design palette from which creators can run wild. In this “1 on 1” discussion, Chris talks about his studio’s rich history embracing practically every 2D/3D/CG/VR technology they’ve gotten their hands on, and how they embrace and leverage that animation production technology to tell great stories for kids aged 3 to 83.

Harnessing Technology to Tell Your Story: A Talk with Jorge Gutierrez 

Jorge Gutierrez, Director, Animator, Writer and Artist, Reel FX.

The Emmy Award-winning director, animator, writer, and artist has embraced and taken advantage of 2D, 3D and VR technology at every stage of his career, from his early work with Flash cartoons, to his latest 3D/CG animated limited series, Maya and the Three, a Mesoamerican fantasy epic that will premiere globally on Netflix in 2021. In this candid talk, the director discusses his strategies for harnessing technology to serve his creative vision, sharing colourful behind-the-scenes stories and personal details of how different production technologies mostly helped, and sometimes hindered, his career in animation.

Titmouse’s 5 Second Day Snack Chats, 2020 Edition

Feast your eyes on a selection of 10 byte-sized cartoons from Emmy Award-winning animation studio Titmouse’s infamous 5 Second Day 2020 Edition screening. If you don’t know about Titmouse’s 5 Second Day, it’s a longstanding tradition – a day when the studio closes so staff can make whatever project is swimming around in their heads. 5 Second Day came about as a way to make cartoons that we can all enjoy, but the tradition has evolved since it first began in 2008. Since then, the complexity, length, and creative collaboration across departments has skyrocketed. Some artists will work on ambitious ideas for months. In the end, the artists retain control of the short. To date, more than 1,000 5 Second Day cartoons have been created.

Reinventing My Filmmaking Career by Pivoting from Live-Action to Animation with Unreal Engine

Hasraf ‘HaZ’ Dulull, Filmmaker, HaZ Film Ltd.

In this presentation, Director Hasraf ‘HaZ’ Dulull talks about shifting from live-action filmmaking to animated feature films and TV production to stay relevant and proactive in Hollywood. Dulull will showcase how Unreal Engine can enable indie filmmakers to tell high concept stories previously not possible to achieve without huge budgets and resources. To demonstrate this, the session begins with the director’s pilot proof of concept project, followed by a discussion of his falling in love with real-time graphics and how that project leads to him getting tapped to direct the animated feature film Mutant Year Zero, based on the acclaimed video game of the same name. Dulull will share how his pilot was created entirely inside Unreal Engine as final pixel renders.

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Ashwathi Anoopkumar