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Festival News



Bonnie Arnold, President Feature Animation, DreamWorks Animation

SPARK Festival Titles & Special Presentation Announced

This year’s SPARK ANIMATION FESTIVAL opens on Thursday, 24 October at 7:15 pm with a celebration honouring this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Academy Award®-nominated producer Bonnie Arnold. Ms. Arnold’s work for Pixar, Walt Disney Animation, and DreamWorks Animation includes Toy Story, Tarzan, and the How to Train Your Dragon franchise. Chris Buck, Academy Award®-winning director (Frozen, Tarzan), Academy Award®-winning director Glen Keane, along with writer, director, and animator Kevin Lima, will present the award at the celebration taking place at the Scotiabank Theatre.

At 9:30 pm, we are pleased to present a very special preview of Netflix’ much anticipated animated feature, Klaus and a conversation with director Sergio Pablos, and Glen Keane.

Other feature films at this year’s festival include a pair of feature films directed by women: the BC Premiere of Anca Damian’s Marona’s Frantastic Tale (France), about an “average” dog and her extraordinary life; and the BC Premiere of Kat Alioshin’s Animation Outlaws (USA), a documentary about the rise and importance of Spike & Mike’s festival to the world of animation.

This year’s festival will also host the BC Premiere of Masaaki Yuasa’s Ride Your Wave (Japan), a surreal story of romance, grief and self-discovery; and Gints Zilbalodis’ Away (Latvia). Winner of the Annecy International Animation Film Festival Contrechamp Award, Zilbalodis wrote, directed, produced, animated, and scored this beautiful tale of adventure.

The line-up also includes a very special 20th Anniversary screening of Disney’s Tarzan with directors Chris Buck and Kevin Lima in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.

SPARK CG is proud to support Covenant House Vancouver in their effort to help the more than 1,400 homeless and at-risk youth, aged 16 to 24, who will reach out to them for help this year. Net proceeds from this year’s film festival screenings will be donated to Covenant House Vancouver.




Conference News




More Guests Added to SPARK Conference

The SPARK ANIMATION Conference, taking place 26 and 27 October, is a highlight for the animation community, providing an opportunity to learn and be inspired by both legends of the industry and up-and-coming new talent. 2019 is once again proving to be an unmissable event.

In addition to previously announced guests Sergio Pablos, director of Netflix’ upcoming Klaus, DreamWorks Animation producer Bonnie Arnold, Oscar winner Glen Keane, and director Kevin Lima, new additions to the line-up include independent animation legend Bill Plympton and former Disney executive and Oscar winner Don Iwerks.

Also presenting at this year’s conference are animation historian Mindy Johnson, Matthew A. Cherry, writer and producer of the Kickstarter sensation Hair Love, National Film Board executive producer Shirley Vercruysse, and Emmy-nominated and Webby award-winning animation and documentary filmmaker Jeff Chiba Stearns among many others.

Full conference passes are only $225 (including fees and taxes). A pass is your ticket to all of the SPARK ANIMATION activities including full access to all conference presentations as well as stand-by access to the Festival film screenings.

Stay tuned for the full schedule and more guest announcements to come!

Jump to the Conference page to discover who else is coming to SPARK this year and get your pass before they're all gone!







Hotel Deal for SPARK Attendees

Are you attending SPARK and need a place to stay close to all of the action? We are pleased to welcome returning partner, the OPUS Hotel as the official hotel of SPARK ANIMATION 2019.

Centrally located in Yaletown, the OPUS is walking distance from the festival venue, the VIFF Vancity Theatre, SkyTrain which provides easy access to the conference venue, Emily Carr, as well as a variety of restaurants, pubs and the waterfront!

Register today to receive the SPARK preferred rate!




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