The Ottawa International Animation Festival is experiencing a bit of a Japanese invasion this year.
“There is a number of Japanese films in competition, it’s a very strong year, they’ve kind of taken over the festival,” said OIAF artistic director Chris Robinson.
This year’s festival will be honouring Astro Boy creator Osamu Tezuka with special screenings of his films and other Japanese animators in the “Time Out of Mind” program.
Tezuka is considered the grandfather of anime, but the program itself will steer clear of anime, so people can get acquainted with other aspects the Japanese animation.
There are 91 films in competition this year and 56 additional entries in the non-competition showcase. They were chosen from 2,911 submissions from 74 countries.
More than 330 of those submissions came from Canadian animators, and 14 were chosen for competition.
Some of the highlights of this year’s lineup include the Canadian premier of Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then, a film about a man’s quixotic attempt to cure his wife’s cancer by turning his house into a healing machine.
It is also the premiere of the Japanese film One Piece Film: Strong World, which is the 10th animated feature based on Eiichoro Oda’s popular Manga series.