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‘Disposable,’ ‘Ghost Bros,’ ‘Olivia and the Shadows’ to Pitch at Annecy’s La Liga Event

“Highlands’ Shadows”
Credit: La Liga

Disposable,” “Ghost Bros” and “Olivia and the Shadows” feature among projects to be pitched from Monday June 14 at at an Ibero-American Animation Focus held at Annecy’s Mifa market and backed by Argentina’s Ventana Sur section Animation!, Spain’s Quirino Awards and Mexico’s Pixelatl festival.

Projects’ slate includes two features, two TV series and a short. In addition, Ventana Sur will this year unveil a special program Animation! Mentoring Program: Female Directors in Focus, which it has created

with the support of Argentina’s French Institute to highlight the work of five women directors.

La Liga projects describe a broad gamut, Animation! head Silvina Cornillon told Variety just before Annecy. Some are clearly auteurist – “Disposable,” “Bring On the Revolution” and “Where Is My Espresso” – while others have far larger commercial potential, such as “Olivia and the Shadows” and “Ghost Bros.” All, however, reflect the Latin DNA of their creators, she added. A brief breakdown:

“Olivia and the Shadows” (Juan Carve, Uruguay, Chile, Peru, Mexico)

Popular on Variety

A best feature and La Liga award winner at last December’s Ventana Sur, 2D project “Olivia”  is a coming of age tale following a girl who, after her mother’s death, is forced to move with her father to Tiny Caledonia, a rainy island where she confronts a dangerous enemy haunting the island: Fear. Juan Carve at Uruguay’s Chucho.tv. Chile’s Lunes Animation, Mexico’s Matte and Peru’s Apus produce. “The Breadwinner”’ screenwriter Anita Doron co-wrote the final screenplay.

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Olivia and the Shadow Credit: La Liga

“Disposable” (Carlos Gómez Salamanca, Colombia, Spain)

Produced by Colombia’s Nocroma with Spain’s Jaibo Films now on board, “Disposable,” shared honors as best feature at last year’s Ventana Sur. It offers a “brutal and poetic panorama of contemporary societies from a pre-apocalyptic perspective,” said Gómez. Boasting singular technique –a Nocroma’s trademark– the film melds analogue 2D, 3D digital animation and digital photography.

“Ghost Bros” (Jorge Edelstein, Argentina, Spain)

Produced by Martín Blasi at Argentina’s Yellow Kingdom and Spain’s WeDoo Studio, Edelstein’s series “Ghost Bros” explores what the family and happiness mean for kids through an absurdist humor and wacky situations. Two orphaned brothers die and invoke a secret clause from the underworld where they can return to earth if they are adopted. The 26-episode show aims to “talk about the family in a fun and inclusive way,” said Blasi, a former content developer for The Walt Disney Company Latin America.

“Bring on the Revolution!” (Aleixo Leite, Brazil)

“In order to understand who we are, we must uncover the stories that are not in history books” producer André Pereira at Brazil’s Lupa Filmes. Series is a hybrid animated docuseries whose six half hours focus on big revolutions led by men and women who were subsequently sidelined in official history – such as João Cândido Felisberto, a leader of the Chibata Revolt in 1910.

“Where Is My Espresso?” (Sebastián García, Andrés Felipe Rodríguez, Colombia)

“Expresso” won best short at Mexico’s Pixelatl Shortway. It follows Oniria who lives a stressful, dangerous but sad routine between two jobs and online night school

The Mentoring Program frames one feature ­­– Matisse González’s “Cursed Children” – and four TV series: Paula Boffo’s “Highland’s Shadow,” Emilce Avalos’ “Future Woman,” Maria Coello’s “Flavor Quest” and Elva Alessandra Arrieta’s “Greta’s Journal.”

“Cursed Children,” from Bolivia’s Celeste Estudio, is a “narrative comedy about an exquisitely damned family,” according to its producers; Targeting pre-schoolers, “Greta’s Journal,” produced by Peru’s Wuf Studio, weighs in as a stop-motion series registering the adventurous process of children discovering the every day world. Produced by Chile’s Estudio Rayo Púrpura, “Flavor Quest” focuses on Vera who, guided by a magical cookbook, has a mission to set free lost flavors.

“Future Woman,” in development at Argentina’s Primavera Films and Tamandúa Estudio, mixes documentary and experimental animation, turning on new forms of children’s upbringing in feminist times and their social impact. Each episode employs a different animation technique –cut-out, rotoscoping, and 2D.

Targeting young adults and addressing gender and LGBTIQ+ issues, folklore fantasy “Highland’s Shadow” turns on Juana, a girl from Argentina’s Humahuaca whose sister Marisol has been captured by a human trafficking cartel.

Even though the projects at the mentoring program target different audiences, “all reflect the unique visions of the female directors behind them. They’ve all achieved a large balance between establishing a strong cultural identity while addressing universal topics,” Cornillón told Variety. 

Ranging from a revenge-thirsty heroine to a sweet and curious girl collating information about nature through notes in a journal, these five projects bring some fresh air, diversity and the hope of gender equality,” she added.

La Liga de la Animación Iberoamericana in Focus@MIFA

Features

“Disposable” (Carlos Gómez Salamanca, Colombia, Spain)

“Olivia and the Shadows” (Juan Carve, Uruguay, Chile, Peru, Mexico)

Series

“Ghost Bros” (Jorge Edelstein, Argentina, Spain)

“Bring on the Revolution!” (Aleixo Leite, Brazil)

Shorts

“Where Is My Espresso?” (Sebastián García, Andrés Felipe Rodríguez, Colombia)

Animation! Mentoring Program: Female Directors in Focus

Features

“Cursed Children” (Matisse González, Bolivia)

Series

“Flavor Quest” (Maria Coello, Chile)

“Greta’s Journal” (Elva Alessandra Arrieta, Peru)

“Highland’s Shadow” (Paula Boffo, Argentina)

“Future Woman” (Emilce Avalos, Argentina)