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See the nominees for short and feature length animation at the French César awards, which included surprises in the short animation category.

The 43th César Awards revealed their nominees for the upcoming ceremony. Three French feature films compete for the award. Benjamin Renner (of Ernest and Celestine) is here nominated with his new film (co-directed here with Patrick Imbert ) The Grand Big Fox and Other Tales [ read the ZF film review].

The 2017 Annecy winner and fantasy zombie story Zombillénium by Arthur de Pins and Alexis Ducord is the second nominee, while the French-Canadian 3D computer animated film Sahara by Pierre Coré (and a financial success in France, with 1,1 m. admissions) completes the nominees.

The full list:

  • LE GRAND MÉCHANT RENARD ET AUTRES CONTES… : Direction: Benjamin Renner et Patrick Imbert / Production: Folivari
  • SAHARA : Direction : Pierre Coré / Production : La station Animation, Mandarin Production
  • ZOMBILLÉNIUM : Direction :Arthur de Pins et Alexis Ducord / Production :Maybe Movies

In the short animation category, four films were nominated (out of 12 previously shortlisted).

  • I WANT PLUTO TO BE A PLANET AGAIN: Direction : Marie Amachoukeli et Vladimir Mavounia-Kouka / Production : AUTOUR DE MINUIT PRODUCTIONS

A transhumanist romance in the near future. A young boy of modest origins, Marcus, an H-, falls madly in love with an H+

  • LE FUTUR SERA CHAUVE: Direction: Paul Cabon / Production: WAG PROD

Being a bald man sucks. Knowing you'll become one is worse.

  • LE JARDIN DE MINUIT: Direction : Benoît Chieux / Production : SACREBLEU PRODUCTION

The moon shines, a young couple plays in the forest. Their game leads them to an unfamiliar garden, in the middle of a clearing.

  • PÉPÉ LE MORSE: Direction: Lucrèce Andreae / Production : CAIMANS PRODUCTIONS

On the windy and cloudy beach, Granny is praying, Mum is shouting, the sisters don't care, Lucas is alone. Grandpa was a weird guy, now he's dead.

All four films above make for a fine specimen of independent animation, and  have been circulating with success in the international festival circuit. 

Still, it was a surprise not to see in the final nominees any of those three French-produced films  (Negative Space by Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter, Decorado by Alberto Vázquez,  Love by Réka Bucsi),  which have also been successful internationally -but without a French director attached.  It's an interesting question to ask whether director nationality also played a role in the final selection outcome.

In any case, at least the number of the short nominees could definitely be raised from 4 to 5 nominated films (like the Academy Award nominations). There are many worthy French shorts out there -and they don't take up much of time to watch them all.

The 43rd Award Ceremony of the French César Awards is dedicated to Jeanne Moreau, and it will take place 2 March 2018 (Salle Pleyel, Paris).

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