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'Great Rabbit,' 'Muybridge's Strings' Win Awards at Hiroshima Animation Fest

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Lena Lena's Yoriko Mizushiri wins 300,000-yen Renzo Kinoshita Prize award

The 14th Annual Hiroshima International Animation Festival announced on Tuesday that Koji Yamamura's "Muybridge's Strings" anime short and Atsushi Wada's "The Great Rabbit" short both won the Special Prize award. Additionally, Yoriko Mizushiri's "Futon" short won the Renzo Kinoshita Prize award.

"Muybridge's Strings" is the latest anime short by Oscar-nominated animator Koji Yamamura ("Mt. Head," "Franz Kafka's A Country Doctor"). The short won the award "for successful use of modern animation techniques to reveal the life of the inventor of the moving image." The short film previously won the Excellence Prize at the 15th Japan Media Arts Festival Awards in December, and it was nominated for Canada's 32nd Annual Genie Awards in the animated short category in January.

The federal cultural agency Telefilm Canada describes the film's story as follows: "The destiny of photographer Eadweard Muybridge and that of a Japanese mother clash poetically in this exploration of the irrepressible human desire to make time stand still." The 14-minute short opened at the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography last September, and it was released on Blu-ray Disc in Japan on August 25.

Wada's "The Great Rabbit" won the prize "for the creation of a completely believable yet illogical world." Wada directed the seven-minute short with French backing. The film held its world premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in February. The festival described the short as follows:

A magical animation that is also a profound conundrum. Once we called the noble, profound and mysterious existence The Great. But we have moved with the times and our thoughts and consciousness have changed.

"If you believe in the Rabbit, you'll believe in anything. If you don't believe in the Rabbit, it means that you wouldn't believe anything."

The festival will award Mizushiri 300,000 yen (about US$3,820) for winning the Renzo Kinoshita Prize award. The jury noted that the six-minute film won the award "for delicacy, elegance and sensuality in an animated film." Mizushiri previously directed the Lena Lena television anime series based on Harriet van Reek's picture book, which aired on Tokyo MX in 2009.

Sixty-six works were selected from 2,100 titles for screening at this year's festival, which was held from August 23-27.

Source: Saishin Anime Jōhō

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