London International Animation Festival 2017

Barbican Cinema, Barbican Centre
London International Animation Festival 2017
1 - 10 December 2017, Cinemas 1 & 3
Box Office 0845 120 7527


The 14th London International Animation Festival (LIAF 2017) returns to the Barbican with a mammoth 10-day celebratory feast of forums, ScreenTalks and over 200 of the best new and re-discovered animated shorts and features from around the world.


Guests and speakers at LIAF 2017 include the adventurous, innovative and perverse Irish filmmaker David OReilly; the team behind the world’s most abstract film festival, Spain’s Punto Y Raya Festival; and a panel of leading members from the animation industry in a timely screening and discussion on the onscreen representation of women, Female Figures.


Over 2,600 new films were entered for this year’s festival and the best 126 have been selected to screen across several competitive categories in 10 International Competition Programmes such as the British Showcase, scary shorts Into The Dark, From Absurd to Zany’s funny shorts, Animated Documentaries and the Abstract Showcase.

Opening Night Gala: The Absurdist Narratives of David OReilly (15*)

Fri Dec 1 6.30pm, Cinema 1

LIAF celebrates the opening of its 2017 festival with a very special evening with Irish-born, Los Angeles-based independent animator David OReilly, one of the most adventurous, innovative and perverse filmmakers working today. Famous for stripping down 3D graphics to the point of absurdity, his animated films have garnered over 80 awards at film festivals worldwide. Having recently stormed the world of game development and interactive art, OReilly’s work defies traditional forms and aesthetic conventions and includes Alien Child, the unforgettably funny and touching animated video game in Spike Jonze’s Her (2013); live visuals for M.I.A. (2009) and the U2 animated music video I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight (2009). He was also the first guest director in Cartoon Network’s 20-year history, creating the Adventure Time episode A Glitch Is a Glitch.

For this very special LIAF 2017 event, OReilly will discuss the many facets of his award-winning career in animation and graphic design, and screen some of his most celebrated films and interactive projects.


British Showcase (15*)

Fri Dec 1 9pm, Cinema 1

A comprehensive screening of the very best recently released British animation, including several world premieres. Check the pulse of the British animation scene, meet many of the filmmakers and see the films that will take British animation to the world. This is an exceptional opportunity to see what British animators are doing, how they’re doing it and how the art form is progressing in the UK.


Framed Film Club: Amazing Animations for 0-7 year-olds (U*)

Sat Dec 2 11am, Cinema 3

Like childhood, animation is full of wonder and simple pleasures. This carefully chosen programme for younger audiences contains 14 wonderfully joyful short films. Featuring talking animals, seriously fun adventures and tales to spark those little imaginations. Suitable for all ages but especially 0-7 year-olds.


Abstract Showcase (15*)

Sat Dec 2 2pm, Cinema 3

An annual showcase of abstract and experimental animation. Animators working in this field employ every technique, from hand-drawn musical scores to high definition, computer assisted image making. These films share a pure love of animated movement and an artist’s eye for filling the screen, harnessing colour and creating non-narrative imagery.


International Competition Programme 1: From Absurd to Zany (15*)

Sat Dec 2 5pm, Cinema 3

Emerging from 2,600 entries are LIAF’s International Competition screenings - 8 programmes showcasing the very best in new animated films. Submitted from across the globe, using every technique, they are humorous, dramatic, eye-popping, subdued, documentary or autobiographical in nature. The one thing they have in common is that they’re the pick of the crop.

Programme 1 celebrates some of the funniest, weirdest and downright nutty films submitted in 2017.


International Competition Programme 2: Being Human (15*)

Sat Dec 2 7pm, Cinema 3

This programme examines big life moments including a moving look at the last inhabitants of a dying village pondering the fate of their home; a personal tribute to the silent contributions of migrant workers globally; and themes of connection, isolation and female identity in the context of today’s digital world.


Cleopatra (18*)

Sat Dec 2 9pm, Cinema 3

Japan 1970 Dirs Osamu Tezuka/Eiichi Yamamoto 112 mins

Cleopatra is a rare Japanese anime from 1970 made by The Godfather of Manga Osamu Tezuka anddirector Eiichi Yamamoto. Never released in the UK, Cleopatra was part of a series of adult anime films called Animerama, made at Osamu Tezuka’s Mushi Production animation studio from the late 1960s to the early 1970s. Cleopatra takes a look inside Tezuka’s sketchbook with a series of doodles that touch upon the history of Cleopatra before digressing into science fiction, broad, earthy humour and frank sexual content.


Marvellous Animation for 8 – 15 year-olds (PG*)

Sun Dec 3 3pm, Cinema 3

Animation, like childhood, can be full of wonder with the biggest pleasures being the simplest ones. These enthralling films, carefully chosen for children over 8, include a surreal story about three friends who exchange heads by accident, a grumpy granny living in a blue fairy-tale forest and a tense and prickly standoff between a hedgehog and a quartet of insatiable beasts.

Suitable for all ages, especially 8-15 year-olds.


The David OReilly Lecture (15*)

Sun Dec 3 5pm, Cinema 3

Famous for stripping down 3D graphics to the point of absurdity, the animated films of young Irish-born filmmaker and artist David OReilly have garnered over 80 awards at film festivals worldwide. Having recently stormed the realm of game development and interactive art, OReilly’s work awes in its defiance of traditional forms and aesthetic conventions.

A mesmerizing storyteller with a gift for open-ended, absurdist narratives, this will be a rare chance to listen to David OReilly in this specially written lecture for LIAF 2017.


International Competition Programme 3: Looking For Answers (15*)

Sun Dec 3 7pm, Cinema 3

The third part of the Competition programme finds funny, moving and heartfelt stories explored in a compelling series of shorts.

Highlights include a looping GIF with an existential crisis; a peaceful haven populated by good-hearted little frogs; and an unlikely meeting between a tough female polar bear and an enthusiastic male grizzly bear.


International Competition Programme 4: Playing With Emotion (15*)

Sun Dec 3 9pm, Cinema 3

This programme takes a look at all aspects of emotion – love and hate, sadness, anxiety and confusion. Subjects range from four women talking about the nitty-gritty of their first loves and fumbling attempts at sexual expression, an ode to a lost age of internet love, and the interconnection between a man, a woman, a snail and a fly...


International Competition Programme 5: Long Shorts (15*)

Mon Dec 4 6.30pm, Cinema 3

Some films just need extra time to develop their themes, grow and draw us more comprehensively into their worlds. This section of the competition programme is dedicated to showcasing the best of six longer films via six amazing stories.


International Competition Programme 6: Below the Surface (15*)

Mon Dec 4 9pm, Cinema 3

Animation has been called the most innovative of all art forms and these films demonstrate the ability to experiment, deconstruct and ultimately reinvent film language. In these absorbing shorts you’ll encounter films about the world’s greatest inventor Nikola Tesla pondering a revolutionary new concept of electricity; an animated portrait of New York City life in flux; plus an ancient Russian legend where the souls of the drowned transform into seals.


International Competition Programme 7: Into the Dark (15*)

Tue Dec 5 6.30pm, Cinema 3

In the seventh instalment of the Competition Programme are some of the darkest, scariest and spookiest films to emerge this year. Watch out for all manner of creepiness.


International Competition Programme 8: Animated Documentaries + Q&A with filmmakers (15*)

Tue Dec 5 8.30pm, Cinema 3

Persuasive, illustrative and with a knack for portraying abstract ideas, animation is often the perfect tool to document visions of the truth.

These films feature a loving look at the subversive comic genius of Joe Orton, a funny but cautionary story about the dangers of playing football to the more harrowing subjects of post traumatic stress disorder and how a 9 year-old copes with her OCD amongst several other true life tales.


Special programme: Female Figures + Q&A with filmmakers (15*)

Wed Dec 6 6.30pm, Cinema 3

Female Figures presents a selection of shorts featuring complex and compelling female characters, their dreams, frustrations, and dark desires. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion about on screen representation, the problematic depiction of women as passive objects of desire the problematic depiction of women as passive objects of desire, and the rising tide of empowered female perspectives, as demonstrated by the remarkable female animators included in this programme.

Abigail Addison (Animate Projects) will be in conversation with animation professionals Dr Steve Henderson (Manchester Animation Festival), Sarah Ann Kennedy (animated voice actress), Kim Noce (director), and Alys Scott Hawkins (artist/filmmaker).

Special programme: Abstract Art in Motion - The Best of Punto Y Raya Festival + Q&A with organisers Noel Palazzo and Ana Santos (15*)

Wed Dec 6 9pm, Cinema 3

Based in Barcelona but screening all around the world, Punto Y Raya has been called ‘the most abstract festival in the world’ with its explorations into experimental narrative in animation and live cinema through the use of pure form, colour, motion and sound. Since the first festival in 2007 its aim has been to bring together people from all over the world with mottos such as ‘Back to basics!’ and ‘Only via dots and lines!’.

LIAF is very proud to present a screening of the Best of Punto Y Raya, which will be introduced and followed by a Q&A with the organisers.


Don Hertzfelt‘s World of Tomorrow, Episodes 1 and 2
Sun Dec 10 2pm, Cinema 3

Two-time Academy Award nominated director Don Hertzfelt will introduce (via pre-recorded message) his vision of the future in two episodes of World of Tomorrow. In 2015 Don Hertzfeldt‘s animated short World of Tomorrow built a complete vision of the future, investigated the terrors of technological advancement, and ruminated on the power and pitfalls of the human condition. His highly anticipated sequel World of Tomorrow Episode 2: The Burden of Other People’s Thoughts is every bit as stunning and heartbreaking as the first.

Closing Gala - The Best of the Fest (15*)

Sat Dec 9 4pm, Cinema 1

Selected by an industry judging panel and audience votes, these are the best films of LIAF 2017. Festival director Nag Vladermersky will host the event and welcome the judges and award-winning directors to the stage. Categories include Best British Film, Best Sound Design and the overall Best of the Festival film.

Closing Gala - The Best of the Fest (Repeat Screenings) (15*)

Sun Dec 10 4pm, Cinema 3

The final chance to see the very best films from LIAF 2017, as selected by an industry judging panel and audience votes. Don't miss the last chance to see these extraordinary films at Barbican Cinema before the curtain comes down on another LIAF.




Notes to Editors


For further information contact:
Sarah Harvey Publicity: 020 7732 7790
Sarah Harvey:
Eleonora Claps:

Ticket prices: Box Office: 0845 120 7527

* Local Classification

# Certificate to be confirmed