Animayo Gran Canaria, the largest animation festival based in Spain’s Canary Islands, is venturing deep into the metaverse with experts in artificial intelligence, virtual reality and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) joining the leading voices in animation from major studios including DreamWorks and Walt Disney and Skydance, Sony Pictures, and Platige Image.
Approximately 23 guests will participate in 14 master classes, three panel discussions, three workshops, 10 recruitment sessions and other events in the 17th in-person edition that will take place May 4-7 in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.
An online version is expected to be released in October. “This year, the discussions are something new because it is imperative to create a forum for meeting in this increasingly polarized community,” said Damien Perea, founder and director of the festival, which also includes VFX and video games.
Berea said the festival’s impact on local productions continues to grow, with the Canary Islands now home to at least 20 animation and visual effects companies. diverse.
Other early Canaries and its festival include an augmented reality exhibition and NFT sales linked to the popular 2D animated short “Amanece la Noche Larga”, all proceeds of which will go to fundraising to help Ukrainian refugees.
The festival trailer highlights more than 60 animated shorts from nearly 20 countries that will participate in the festival. The winner of the International Grand Prize will have a chance to be nominated for Best Animated Short Film at the Academy Awards. Animayo remains the only festival in Spain that the Academy has classified as a “qualified festival” for this category.
Notable cartoon characters include Klaus Toxvig, Danish animation director, producer of the Oscar-nominated “Song of the Sea”; Luis Labrador of Disney Animation Studio and co-creator of the Academy Award-winning film Encanto; Matt Tuckers, visual effects creator on the popular Netflix movie “The Witcher”; and Aurora Jimenez, visual development artist at DreamWorks Animation with credits including “The Bad Guys,” “Vivo,” “Hotel Transylvania 3,” and “The Emoji Movie.”
Among the technical guests are Yuan Yinzhi, Ubisoft Project Manager and Founding President of the Metaverse Summit in Paris; Edgar Martin Blass, CEO and Creative Director of Virtual Voyagers, Madrid’s 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 of €500,000 ($528,000) for personal online study in Madrid and other major cities.
“I founded Animayo to give aspirants all the opportunities that I never had when I started,” Perea said, adding, “That’s why the festival focuses on training, education, motivation and finally helping people find a job thanks to our recruiters.”
“We are proud to celebrate life again and to personally unite all young people – not young people – with the experts of this community and give more opportunities to the next generation,” Beria said.
“Animayo is a luxury for Gran Canaria. It is a fantastic international offer for training and employment in the audiovisual sector,” emphasized Teodoro Sosa, Minister of the Presidency of Cabildo de Gran Canaria, one of the main sponsors of the annual event.
“Certified gamer. Problem solver. Internet enthusiast. Twitter scholar. Infuriatingly humble alcohol geek. Tv guru.”