On 28 August 2020, the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak republic presented the ALICE project to an audience of industry professionals at the International Animation Festival Fest Anča, Žilina, Slovakia. In exceptional times, it was a unique opportunity to connect in person over the project, allowing for exchange about COVID-19-related on-going concerns within the industry and in the broader context of serving the stability and the future of animation in Europe. ALICE’s presentation included details on the project’s purpose and most recent achievements, as well as timely information on emergency support measures taken across ALICE’s territories.

Bringing together people from production studios, schools and universities, as well as the director of the Slovak Audiovisual Fund and representatives from Slovak national television, the meeting was part of a larger event on Slovak animation, co-organised by the festival and ALICE’s Slovakian partners. The agenda also included presentations of recent and in-progress animated projects, animation companies and art schools, as well as a discussion panel and Q&A sessions.

The event resulted in a productive assessment of the current state of the industry, the lessons learned from the pandemic, the main challenges to tackle and possible solutions to strengthen the industry in the long term. It was followed by an informal networking session, where participants could continue the conversations and share contacts.

True to its mission of celebrating and promoting talent in animation, the festival agreed to include four short films from ALICE’s territories in its line up. Therefore, the festival goers had a chance to discover the excellent ‘Ji Vou Veu Volti’ by Benoît Féroumont (2018), ‘La bague au doigt’ by GerlandoInfuso, ‘The N.A.P.’ by Adolfo di Molfetta (2017) and ‘Fifi Fatal’ by Mária Kralovič (2018).

With this valuable experience of working together, ALICE and the Fest Anča festival agreed they would renew the partnership in 2021.

International Animation Festival Fest Anča took place in Žilina, from 27th to 30th August 2020. The next edition will run in July 2021.