Fest Anča 2023 winners announced

Žilina, 1 July 2023

This year’s Anča Awards have been awarded! The winners were unveiled at a ceremony on 1 July at historic Žilina Town Theatre, this event symbolically marks the end of the festival’s 16th although the programme continues until Sunday. The international jury was impressed by films that showcased lots of creativity, insight, strong artistic vision, and personal commitment.

The overall winner, and winner of the Anča Award for Best Animated Short Film, was the Swiss film Armat by Elodie Dermange. Honourable mention in the same category went to In the Big Yard Inside the Teeny-Weeny Pocket by Japanese director Yoko Yuki. The Anča Award for the Best Slovak Animated Short Film went to Doubt, directed by Adela Križovenská from FAMU in Prague.

International Competition of Short Animated Films

Armat tells the story of Elodie, who tries to find out more about her family’s Armenian origins. She discovers the harsh history of her ancestors by talking to her father, uncle, and great-aunt. The jury – composed of Cheng-Hsu Chung, Joanna Kozuch and last year’s Anča Award winner for Best Animated Short Film, Malte Stein – highlighted that “it’s a universal story about solving multi-generational family problems, where deep traumas hold back expressing ordinary love.” 

The jury gave a special mention to In the Big Yard Inside the Teeny-Weeny Pocket, which is a charming animated rhyme based on observation, recording and experimentation. The jury praised its subtle depiction of the beautiful little things of everyday life, even though its visuals are more reminiscent of a horror film.”

Balaclava (2021)

The Anča Award for Best Student Animated Short Film was awarded by the same main jury to the Belgian film Balaclava, which tells the story of an illegal sleepover, a clumsy burglary, a pair of best friends, and long fingernails. The jury highlighted that “this is a film whose playful visuals and authentic dialogue remind us to look at the world through rebellious eyes and to cherish precious interpersonal connections.

Special mention in the student film category went to the experimental Estonian film Cufufu by Bruno Quast. The jury especially praised the film’s sound: “it shows the importance of a subtle connection between visuals and unique sound design.”

Slovak Competition of Films 

The winner of the Slovak competition is Doubt a short film essay about the creative process through the voices of four authors from different artistic fields. The jury composed of renowned animation world names Daniel Šuljic, Diana Cam Van Nguyen, and well-known animation studies expert Olga Bobrowska – described the film as “an impressive combination of animation techniques that playfully depicts the artist’s everyday struggle with creativity and the need to take care of oneself.” 

In the same category, the jury awarded a special mention to Filip Diviak’s My Name is Edgar and I Have a Cow. The jury praised its “simple and relaxed humour combined with great animation“. He also received the same special mention in the same category a year ago for Sounds Between the Crowns.

Doubt (2023)

The selection of award-winning films is also highlighted by Jakub Spevák, Fest Anča’s programme director: Young Slovak animators are willing to experiment with animation techniques, and showcase storytelling brilliance, original humour, and a laid-back approach. ” 

Competition of Music Videos and Best Children’s Film

From the entered music videos, the jury (Luce Grosjean, Marta Pajek and Marek Menke) selected the winner and a special mention. The Anča Award for Best Animated Music Video went to Argentinian director Ezequiel Torres for No Lullaby. The jury noted “its cinematic eloquence, music, and the important message of support and care for our loved ones even when they’re only fighting imaginary demons.” 

The music video jury also awarded a special mention to Mariupol. A Hundred Nights by Sofiia Melnyk. They were impressed by “its inspiration in these turbulent times from the drawings of a 4-year-old girl from Mariupol, uniquely combining animation with powerful music.”

No Lullaby (2022)

The Anča Award for the Best Animated Film for Children was decided by a special children’s jury, with Pond by the female director duo of Lena von Döhren and Eva Rust awarded as best film. 

Winners of Anča Awards of the 16th Fest Anča International Animation Festival 2023

Best Animated Short: Elodie Dermange – Armat (Switzerland, 2022)

Animated Short – Special Mention: Yoko Yuki – In the Big Yard Inside the Teeny-Weeny Pocket (Japan, 2022)

Best Student Animated Short: Youri Orekhoff – Balaclava (Belgium, 2021)

Student Animated Short – Special Mention: Bruno Quast – Cufufu (Estonia, 2021)

Best Animated Music Video: No Lullaby – Ezequiel Torres (Argentina, 2022)

Animated Music Video – Special Mention: Sofiia Melnyk – Mariupol. A Hundred Nights (Ukraine, 2022)

Best Slovak Animated Short: Adela Križovenská – Doubt (Czech Republic, 2023)

Slovak Animated Short – Special Mention: Filip Diviak – My Name is Edgar and I Have a Cow (Czech Republic, Slovakia, 2023)

Best Animated Short for Children: Lena Von Döhren, Eva Rust – Pond (Switzerland, 2023)

About Fest Anča

The Fest Anča International Animation Festival is the only Slovak multimedia festival that focuses on adult-targeted animated film. The event is held in Žilina at the New Synagogue, Stanica Žilina-Záriečie cultural centre, City Theatre, Rosenfeld Palace, and Artforum. The festival presents contemporary progressive animated films alongside the best of the genre’s older output and seeks to raise awareness of animation as a full-fledged art form and to educate its audience about various animation forms.

The festival annually includes an international competition of animated short films and music videos, as well as thematic and specially focused film sections. Fest Anča also includes four days of lectures, screenings for children, and numerous accompanying events.

The International Animation Festival Fest Anča 2023 is financially supported by the Audiovisual Fund. The festival was financially supported by the LITA Fund. The Fest Anča Student Forum received a grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants.   

Working together towards a green, competitive and inclusive Europe.
The event is funded by the Student Forum Fest Anča project supported by the EEA and Norway Grants 2014-2021 and the State Budget of the Slovak Republic, with project number CLT02018.

This project was realized thanks to the financial support of the SPP Foundation.