40 Animated Projects Heading to CEE Animation Forum 2021

CEE Animation Forum reveals its selections, having received a record number of submissions with high representation of authors from Central and Eastern Europe. The line-up of 40 animated projects features Student Academy Award-winning or shortlisted filmmakers but also debut works. Due to the present Covid-19 situation, the upcoming edition of the CEE Animation Forum will take place online in two stages. The traditional pitching competition, newly expanded to 5 categories, will be held April 26 – 29, and the additional industry programme in May 4 – 6.

For its 9th edition, the organizers received a record number of 116 submissions from 27 countries. From among these, a committee of international experts has made a final selection of projects to be pitched. The majority of the selected teams come from Central and Eastern Europe: 6 from Hungary, 4 from France and Slovakia, 3 from Czech Republic, Germany , Slovenia, 2 from Croatia, Cyprus, , Netherlands, Lithuania, Poland, Spain and 1 project from Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy, Norway and Switzerland.

We received a record number of submissions this year, with balanced representation of Central and Eastern European countries and the most developed markets of Western Europe. Each year demonstrates that the quality of works originating from the region of Central and Eastern Europe is improving very rapidly, which is very motivating for us and for the industry. Compared to 2017, we have almost doubled the number of projects in competition, and from two categories we have increased to a total of five, including Rising Stars, a student short films category we are introducing for the first time this year” adds Matija Sturm.

This year has shown fairly equal representation for women. In a total of 40 projects, the percentage of female directors is 47% and producers 46%. Representation in Heads of sections is 100% female: Zofia Jaroszuk (feature films), Reka Temple (series & TV specials), Aneta Ozorek (short films), Manu Weiss (XR projects) and Gyorgyi Falvai (Rising Stars).

New category: Rising Stars

The purpose of launching the Rising Stars section is, on the one hand, to increase the quality of school projects through the challenge of experiencing a real market situation. On the other hand, CEE Animation would like to initiate a dialogue between the schools in the region. “We are all eagerly looking forward to meeting new talents and seeing the future engines of regional animation. Schools are the most important workshops of unrestricted creations where the animation profession can refresh from and where new trends are born, which is why we have to pay attention to them,” explains Gyorgyi Falvai, Head of the section. Students will get the same opportunity as other pitch participants: to meet mentors, get professional feedback, network, and the best will also be awarded.

A coaching programme for teams

All of the pitching project teams are starting with coaching in March: the first session is with Bonnie Williams, which will be followed by 1:1 direct consultations provided by Matthieu Darras, Bonnie Williams and Katrin Nandelstadt. “Each project receives access to the introductory and two individual coaching sessions, so we will provide 84 individual sessions in the upcoming weeks to assist project teams when preparing for both the pre-recorded video pitch and 1:1 meetings with juries and industry representatives” adds Matija Sturm.

Although the online version can limit personal connections, the organizers have kept their goal of creating a space for networking and exchanging information between film professionals. Everyone registered will have the possibility to meet with international co-producers, world sales agents, broadcasters, streaming platforms, distributors, representatives of public funds and financiers in more than 400 individual meetings organized in advance.

Project selection


Birds Don’t Look Back       
Director: Nadia Nackle
Producer: Sebastien Onomo, Special Touch Studios
Country: France

Director: Dimitri Planchon
Producer: Alexandre Gavras, KG Productions
Country: France

Director: Veljko Popovic, Milivoj Popovic
Producer: Milivoj Popovic, Veljko Popovic, Prime Render d.o.o.
Country: Croatia

Producer: Tania Assova, Zographic Films Ltd.
Country: Bulgaria

Senior Crush           
Director: Orsolya Richolm
Producer: Andrea Ausztrics, ULab Kft
Country: Hungary

The Night Falls over Madrid           
Director: Daniel V. Villamediana, David Epiney
Producer: Eugenia Mumenthaler, Alina film
Country: Switzerland

Vast Blue Antarctica           
Director: Christos Panagos
Producer: Charalambos Margaritis, Kimonos Animation Studio
Country: Cyprus

(only series in the selection)

Anselmo Wannabe       
Director: Massimo Ottoni
Producer: Federico Turani, Ibrido
Country: Italy

Director:  Jack O’Shea
Producer: Paul Ruttledge, Bogboy Productions Limited
Country: Ireland

Deivit and Lisa       
Director: Alessandro Di Renzo, Mario Tarragó
Producer: Mario Tarragò, Alessandro Di Renzo
Country: Spain

Director: Geza M. Toth
Producer: Geza M. Toth, KEDD Animation Studio
Country: Hungary

Robot and the Martians       
Director: Tomasz Niedzwiedz
Producer: Tomasz Paziewski, Badi Badi
Country: Poland

Rosie and Sapphire           
Director: Anna Katalin Lovrity
Producer: Balint Gelley, CUB Animation Ltd.
Country: Hungary

Starting with Hope           
Director: Sonia Velvien
Producer: Kèota Dengmanara, Moukda Production
Country: France

The Olive Bunch           
Director: Magnus Kravik
Producer: Maria Pavlou, Pixel giants
Country: Cyprus

What the Old Moon Tells       
Director: Eliza Plocieniak-Alvarez
Producer: Carol Ratajczak, Blaue Pampelmuse
Country: Germany


Director: Szandra Pataki
Producer: Krisztina Endrenyi, Mythberg Films Kft.
Country: Hungary

Director: Wojciech Sobczyk
Producer: Aneta Zagorska, Robert Sowa, Krakow Film Klaster – Centrum Animacji w Krakowie
Country: Poland

Electra. A Poem           
Director: Daria Kashcheeva
Producer: Zuzana Krivkova, MAUR film s.r.o.
Country: Czech Republic

Hello Summer           
Director: Martin Smatana
Producer: Martin Smatana, Studio Bororo
Country: Slovakia

Director: Maria Burgues, Enric Sant
Producer: Maria Burgues, BLISS PICTURES
Country: Spain

Milu’s dog           
Director: Daniel Gray
Producer: Bella Szederkenyi, CUB Animation
Country: Hungary

Nut Cake           
Director: Meinardas Valkevicius
Producer: Akvile Bliujute – Januse, JSC Meinart
Country: Lithuania

Patrick in Town           
Director: Eszter Sandor, Valentina Huckova
Producer: Valentina Huckova, Young Glass Noodle
Country: Slovakia

Director: Ignas Meilunas
Producer: Juste Beniusyte, Vilniaus Primavera
Country: Lithuania

Sugar, Blood & Insulin. Diary of a Type 1 Diabetic       
Director: Thijs Koole
Producer: Diana Hentulescu, Moukda Production
Country: France

Director: Misia Mormina, Engin Karabagli
Producer: Engin Karabagli, Misia Mormina, Emegro B.V.
Country: Netherlands


Finding Frida           
Director: Hilde Kristin Kjøs
Producer: Bjørn-Morten Nerland, Stargate Media AS
Country: Norway

Fruits on the Tube           
Director: Klaas-Harm de Boer
Producer: Vincent Lindenboom, Next Empire BV
Country: Netherlands

Director: Maarten Isaak de Heer
Producer: Evelyn Brancard, Menetekel Film
Country: Germany


Beyond the Face           
Director: Anja Resman
Producer: Bostjan Potokar, School of Arts – University of Nova Gorica
Country: Slovenia

Desire to Win       
Director: Michaela Rezova
Producer: Zuzana Bukovinska, Academy of Arts, Architecture & Design in Prague
Country: Czech Republic

Director: Alzbeta Macakova Misejkova
Producer: Jiri Pecinovsky, Film and TV School of Academy of Performing Arts in Prague – FAMU
Country: Czech Republic

Director: Sofiya Kruglikova
Producer: Academy of Fine Arts and Design – University of Ljubljana
Country: Slovenia

Director: Miha Reja
Producer: Bostjan Potokar, School of Arts – University of Nova Gorica
Country: Slovenia

Light Year Apart           
Director: Viktoria Taranova
Producer: Michaela Cermakova, Film and TV Faculty of the Academy of the Performing Arts – VŠMU
Country: Slovakia

Orange You Glad           
Director: Daniel Sterlin-Altman
Producer: Daniel Sterlin-Altman, Filmuniversität Babelsberg Konrad Wolf
Country: Germany

Director: Ema Nemcovicova
Producer: Film and TV Faculty of the Academy of the Performing Arts – VŠMU
Country: Slovakia

The Last Drop           
Director: Anna Tokes
Producer: Jozsef Fulop, Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design Budapest – MOME
Country: Hungary

The Perfect Gift           
Director: Kristina Penava
Producer: The Academy of Arts and Culture in Osijek
Country: Croatia


CEE Animation is supported by the Creative Europe – MEDIA Programme of the European Union and co-funded by state funds and foundations and professional organisations from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia.

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