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Animafest Zagreb 2020 selects Georges Schwizgebel, the multi-award-winning Swiss animation film director famous for being the master of paint-on-glass animation, as the recipient of the “Lifetime Achievement Award”. The festival will screen 15 of his great films back-to-back in “MASTERS OF ANIMATION”, a special retrospective programme, on Tuesday 29th September. The films to be screened are:

  • Pirouette (1969)
  • The Flight of Icarus (1974)
  • Off-Side (1977)
  • The Ravishing of Frank N. Stein (1982)
  • 78 R.P.M. (1985)
  • Nakounine (1986)
  • The Ride to the Abyss (1992)
  • The Year of the Deer (1995)
  • The Man Without a Shadow (2004)
  • Play (2006)
  • Retouches (2008)
  • Romance (2011)
  • Along the Way (2012)
  • Erlking (2015)
  • The Battle of San Romano (2017)

We had a short interview with Georges Schwizgebel and Daniel Šuljić, the artistic director of the festival, on the special programme.

Interview with Georges Schwizgebel

Hideki Nagaishi (HN): What do you personally think is the uniqueness or main characteristic of your films?

Georges Schwizgebel: I think the main characteristic of my films is that I attach great importance to movement, music and image, therefore there is no space for spoken dialogue.

HN: What is the attractiveness and motivation for you in making animation?

Georges Schwizgebel: I make short animated films so that I can communicate with a large number of people through moving paintings and perhaps add a little poetry to them. I also like to solve the technical problems posed by this medium of expression which combines drawing with music.

Interview with Daniel Šuljić

HN: What is the significance of the festival in giving Georges Schwizgebel the “Lifetime Achievement Award” and having a retrospective screening programme of his great works?

Daniel Šuljić: All of us at the festival are very happy with the decision given by the festival council. He was personally in Zagreb many times. The first time was in 1974, when his film The Flight of Icarus immediately won an award in its category. He is the most awarded filmmaker in the history of Zagreb with all-together 10 awards over the almost 50 years of his, and the festival’s, career.

HN: Do you have a message to the attendees of the festival on this special programme?

Daniel Šuljić: His work is very personal and impressive, but not only something like several films as it is usual with most great filmmakers. The whole body of work, he is one of the most consistent filmmakers in the animation world. He maintained the same level of artistic energy in his films throughout the decades, slowly evolving his style managing to amaze from film to film.