ANNECY, France — France’s Annecy Festival is rolling out its brand abroad. In a first move, leveraging the event’s prestige, CITIA Image et Industries Créatives, the organizers of the Annecy Festival, announced Tuesday at the 2017 event that it will launch an inaugural Annecy Asia Intl. Animated Film Festival in Seoul in September 2019, in cooperation with South Korea’s Seoul Animation Center (SBA) and SK Broadband, one of South Korea’s biggest broadband suppliers.
A framework partnership deal was signed on Tuesday morning at Annecy by Citia CEO Patrick Eveno, SBA president Hyungchul Joo and Harry (Sang Chul) Yoon, SK Broadband chief content officer.
The partners plan for the Annecy Asia Festival to take place at the Digital Media City (DMC), Created in 2002 on a former landfill, this high-tech center is dedicated to new digital technologies occupying 570,000 square-meters with offices, exhibition space and conference rooms.
Still in early development. precise details of the festival will be developed over the next two years. The Festival will be primarily designed for the general public, Eveno said at a presentation of the new partnership.
“But the partners do envisage such elements such as conferences and masterclasses, involving European professionals visiting Seoul,” he added.
The presence of Annecy in Seoul will inevitably have a market knock-on, however.
“Annecy offers opportunities for Korean animation to join the international market,” said Yoon. “Most Asian countries have good animation but they lack international markets, limiting productions to one market.” So one question would be how Asian films could be promoted in the Annecy Festival, Yoon added.
The Annecy Asia Festival will be open to films from around the world, Eveno said.
“We are an international festival, not just an Asian festival,” he said. Some elements of June’s Annecy event, such as retrospectives, may repeat from one event to the other, he went on.
“This is a great opportunity to spread the Annecy trademark abroad,” Mickaël Marin, CITIA managing director.
He went on: “We are certain that this international dynamic will enrich all parties involved collectively.”
Rolling out its brand outside Annecy, the world’s biggest animation meet, the event is following a major market trend for Festivals. It has for the last two years organized Annecy Goes To Cannes, a showcase of about five animation titles in development or production which are screened or pitched in a single session at Cannes Film Market.