Animayo Gran Canaria, the largest animation festival based in the Canary Islands in Spain, has partnered in the deep metaverse with experts in artificial intelligence, virtual reality and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) participating in leading animation voices from major studios including DreamWorks, Walt Disney, Skydance, Sony Pictures and Platige Image.
About 23 guests will participate in 14 master classes, three panel discussions, three workshops, 10 recruiting sessions and other events in the 17th in-person edition to be held May 4-7 in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.
An online edition is expected to launch in October. “This year, the debates are a new one because we need to create a forum for the encounter in this increasingly polarized society,” said Damian Perea, founder-director of the festival, which also includes VFX and games. in the video.
The festival’s impact on local production continues to grow as the Canary Islands now has at least 20 animation and visual effects companies, according to Perea. Various.
Other firsts for the Canary Islands and its festival include an augmented reality exhibition and NFT sales tied to the acclaimed 2D animated short “Amanece la Noche Larga”, all proceeds of which will go to fundraising to help Ukrainian refugee.
The festival trailer features highlights of more than 60 animated shorts from nearly 20 countries participating in the festival. The winner of the international grand prize has a chance to be shortlisted for Best Animated Short at the Oscars. Animayo remains the only festival in Spain designated as a ‘qualifying festival’ by the Academy for this category.
Animation luminaries include Claus Toksvig, Danish animation director, producer of the Oscar-nominated toon “Song of the Sea”; Luis Labrador of Disney Animation Studio, one of the creators of Oscar-winning “Encanto”; Matt Tokarz, creator of the visual effects of the famous “The Witcher” produced by Netflix; and Aurora Jiménez, a visual development artist at DreamWorks Animation with credits including “The Bad Guys,” “Vivo,” “Hotel Transylvania 3,” and “The Emoji Movie.”
Among the tech guests were Yuan Yinzi, Ubisoft project manager and founding president at the Metaverse Summit in Paris; Edgar Martín-Blas, CEO and Creative Director of Virtual Voyagers, the Madrid pioneer in virtual, augmented and mixed reality; and Isidro Quintana, CEO of Triple O Games, Metaverse and Play2earn Experiences.
The festival will once again offer a scholarship program worth € 500,000 ($ 528,000) for online and in-person study in Madrid and other major cities.
“I founded Animayo to give aspirants all the opportunities I didn’t have when I started,” Perea said, adding, “That’s why the festival focuses on training, education, encouragement and ultimately, helping. to people who can find work thanks to our recruiters ”.
“We are proud to celebrate life again and to unite all young people – and not so young – personally with the experts of this community and to provide more opportunities to the next generation,” he said. Perea.
“Animayo is a luxury for Gran Canaria. It is a great international show for training and work in the audiovisual sector,” confirmed Teodoro Sosa, Minister of the Presidency of the Cabildo de Gran Canaria, one of the leading promoter of the annual event.