There is something about the medium of animation that allows it to truly capture the hearts of cinema-goers and movie-makers alike.
From the classic Disney pictures of Snow White and Fantasia, to the captivating stopmotion of Ray Harryhausen and the lush CGI of Toy Story; over the years animation has repeatedly given filmmakers a license to let their imaginations run wild.
It is precisely this property of animation that the Animated Exeter Festival is on honour of. For five days – between February 18th and February 23rd 2013 – Exeter is taken over by a cavalcade of animation movie screenings, workshops and other events dedicated to this fascinating cinematic medium.
The Exeter Phoenix, the Thelma Hulbert Gallery and the Exeter Picturehouse are just three of the 16 venues that will be hosting events as part of the festival. While there is no overarching ticket for the festival, there are several special offers available that allow enthusiasts entry into multiple events across the five day period.
Events are divided into four main groups: film screenings; exhibitions; workshops and miscellaneous events. Amongst the films being screened during the festival are several documentaries on the pioneering Ray Harryhausen, as well as showings of Tim Burton's Frankenweenie, The Gruffalo's Child and Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr Fox.
Exhibitions include The Art You Grew Up With – a nostalgic look at famous scenes and figures from animations of yesteryear – while festival attendees are invited to try their hands at creating their own stopmotion films and their own Moomin figures at the various workshops held across the city.
Quizzes and adventure games are covered in the miscellaneous events category, making Animated Exeter a truly fascinating and consistently surprising festival. If you find yourself in the South West in February, be sure to get involved.