At the Ottawa International Animation Festival


Every September, for five days, Ottawa becomes the centre of the animation universe as the Ottawa International Animation Festival (OIAF) takes over downtown.

Aside from mainstream stuff, like The Simpsons and Family Guy, I don’t really consider myself very knowledgeable when it comes to animation. I discovered this festival, because I worked here, in the run up to and during the 2012 edition of the festival, as the festival’s media relations coordinator.

This year, I’m contributing in a reduced role, as the public address announcer for the competition screenings.

The OIAF is a special festival. It brings together a fascinating and friendly group of people from all around the world who are exceptionally creative and love to have fun. The majority of the films screened here are a labour of love for the animators. They don’t do it for the money or to become famous, they do it because it’s what they love.

Having worked for this festival in 2012, I can tell you that it’s a massive undertaking for the organizers. The event lasts five days, but takes a full year’s worth of preparation. A lot of people put in a lot of hard work and long hours to make this event a success. Their hard work makes this special event come to reality.

The short competitions are the festival’s signature event and offer some mind-blowing stuff. The animation on display is, funny, perverse, depressing and mind-bending all at once. The animation community features a diverse group of characters, creating bold films that go far beyond what we see in The Simpsons, Family Guy and the like.

Here’s a few videos that I liked to give you a taste of what this festival offers up.

I am alone and my head is on fire
David OReilly
This short film was made on an ipad app, McLaren’s Workshop App

Grand Central Diary
By London Squared Productions

Ketsujiru Juke [NSFW]
By Sawako Kabuki

I’m no film critic, so I won’t write any reviews. If you’re a film buff or‚ into reviews and film discussion, check out my buddy’s blog, The Cinemablographer, an Ottawa movie head who reviews just about everything.


The Ottawa International Animation Festival runs from September 18th to the 22nd. Visit for details and schedules.

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