CEE Animation Forum reveals its selections, having received a record number of submissions with high representation of authors from Central and Eastern Europe. The line-up of 42 animated projects features Student Academy Award-winning or shortlisted filmmakers but also debut works. Due to the present Covid-19 situation, the upcoming edition of the CEE Animation Forum will take place online in two stages. The traditional pitching competition, newly expanded to 5 categories, will be held April 26 – 29, and the additional industry programme in collaboration with Anifilm International Festival of Animated Films May 4 – 9 2021.

For its 9th edition, the organizers received a record number of 116 submissions from 27 countries. From among these, a committee of international experts has made a final selection of projects to be pitched. The majority of the selected teams come from Central and Eastern Europe: 6 from Hungary, 4 from Slovakia, 3 from Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Netherlands, Slovenia, 2 from Cyprus, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Spain and 1 project from Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Romania, Switzerland and Ukraine.

We received a record number of submissions this year, with balanced representation of Central and Eastern European countries and the most developed markets of Western Europe. Each year demonstrates that the quality of works originating from the region of Central and Eastern Europe is improving very rapidly, which is very motivating for us and for the industry. Compared to 2017, we have almost doubled the number of projects in competition, and from two categories we have increased to a total of five, including Rising Stars, a student short films category we are introducing for the first time this year,” adds Matija Sturm.

This year has shown fairly equal representation for women. In a total of 42 projects, the percentage of female directors is 47% and producers 46%. Representation in Heads of sections is 100% female: Zofia Jaroszuk (feature films), Reka Temple (series & TV specials), Aneta Ozorek (short films), Manu Weiss (XR projects) and Gyorgyi Falvai (Rising Stars).

New category: Rising Stars

The purpose of launching the Rising Stars section is, on the one hand, to increase the quality of school projects through the challenge of experiencing a real market situation. On the other hand, CEE Animation would like to initiate a dialogue between the schools in the region. “We are all eagerly looking forward to meeting new talents and seeing the future engines of regional animation. Schools are the most important workshops of unrestricted creations where the animation profession can refresh from and where new trends are born, which is why we have to pay attention to them,” explains Gyorgyi Falvai, Head of the section. Students will get the same opportunity as other pitch participants: to meet mentors, get professional feedback, network, and the best will also be awarded.

A coaching programme for teams

All of the pitching project teams are starting with coaching in March: the first session is with Bonnie Williams, which will be followed by 1:1 direct consultations provided by Matthieu Darras, Bonnie Williams and Katrin Nandelstadt. “Each project receives access to the introductory and two individual coaching sessions, so we will provide 84 individual sessions in the upcoming weeks to assist project teams when preparing for both the pre-recorded video pitch and 1:1 meetings with juries and industry representatives,” adds Matija Sturm.

Although the online version can limit personal connections, the organizers have kept their goal of creating a space for networking and exchanging information between film professionals. Everyone registered will have the possibility to meet with international co-producers, world sales agents, broadcasters, streaming platforms, distributors, representatives of public funds and financiers in more than 400 individual meetings organized in advance.



  • Birds Don’t Look Back                       

Director: Nadia Nackle

Producer: Sebastien Onomo, Special Touch Studios

Country: France           

  • Blaise                                     

Director: Dimitri Planchon

Producer: Alexandre Gavras, KG Productions

Country: France

  • Dreamworld                                       

Director: Veljko Popovic

Producer: Milivoj Popovic, Prime Render d.o.o.

Country: Croatia

  • Grizzlebetter                                      

Producer: Tania Assova, Zographic Films Ltd.

Country: Bulgaria

  • Senior Crush                                     

Director: Orsolya Richolm

Producer: Andrea Ausztrics, Umbrella Kreatív Műhely Kft.

Country: Hungary

  • The Night Falls over Madrid                                      

Director: Daniel V. Villamediana, David Epiney

Producer: Eugenia Mumenthaler, Alina film

Country: Switzerland

  • Vast Blue Antarctica                                      

Director: Christos Panagos

Producer: Charalambos Margaritis, Kimonos Animation Studio

Country: Cyprus

CATEGORY SERIES & TV SPECIALS (only series in the selection)

  • Anselmo Wannabe                             

Director: Massimo Ottoni

Producer: Federico Turani, Ibrido         

Country: Italy

  • Bogboy                                  

Director:  Jack O’Shea

Producer: Paul Ruttledge, Bogboy Productions Limited

Country: Ireland

  • Deivit and Lisa                                   

Director: Alessandro Di Renzo

Producer: Mario Tarrago

Country: Spain

  • Mitch-Match                                       

Director: Geza M. Toth

Producer: Geza M. Toth, KEDD Animation Studio

Country: Hungary

  • Robot and the Martians                                  

Director: Tomasz Niedzwiedz

Producer: Tomasz Paziewski, Badi Badi

Country: Poland          

  • Rosie and Sapphire                                       

Director: Anna Katalin Lovrity

Producer: Balint Gelley, CUB Animation Ltd.

Country: Hungary

  • Starting with Hope                                         

Director: Sonia Velvien

Producer: Diana Hentulescu, Moukda Production

Country: Romania

  • The Adventures of Gloria Scott                                  

Director: Matija Pisacic

Producer: Dijana Mladenovic, Kinematograf

Country: Croatia

  • The Olive Bunch                                            

Director: Magnus Kravik

Producer: Maria Pavlou, Pixel giants

Country: Cyprus

  • What the Old Moon Tells                               

Director: Eliza Plocieniak-Alvarez

Producer: Carol Ratajczak, Blaue Pampelmuse 

Country: Germany

  • Zhuzha Fixes the World                                 

Director: Oleksandra Ruban

Producer: Kateryna Kopylova, Sashko Chubko, Trident Film

Country: Ukraine          


  • Albert                                     

Director: Szandra Pataki

Producer: Krisztina Endrenyi, Mythberg Films Kft.

Country: Hungary

  • Autumn                                              

Director: Wojciech Sobczyk

Producer: Aneta Zagorska, Robert Sowa, Krakow Film Klaster – Centrum Animacji w Krakowie

Country: Poland

  • Electra. A Poem                                             

Director: Daria Kashcheeva

Producer: Zuzana Krivkova, MAUR film s.r.o.

Country: Czech Republic

  • Hello Summer                                    

Director: Martin Smatana

Producer: Martin Smatana, Studio Bororo

Country: Slovakia

  • Ibis                                        

Director: Maria Burgues, Enric Sant

Producer: Maria Burgues, BLISS PICTURES

Country: Spain

  • Milu’s dog                                          

Director: Daniel Gray

Producer: Bella Szederkenyi, CUB Animation

Country: Hungary

  • Nut Cake                                            

Director: Meinardas Valkevicius

Producer: Akvile Bliujute – Januse, JSC Meinart

Country: Lithuania

  • Patrick in Town                                             

Director: Eszter Sandor, Valentina Huckova

Producer: Valentina Huckova, Young Glass Noodle

Country: Slovakia

  • Sivužas (working title)                                     

Director: Ignas Meilunas

Producer: Juste Beniusyte, Vilniaus Primavera

Country: Lithuania

  • Sugar, Blood & Insulin. Diary of a Type 1 Diabetic                            

Director: Thijs Koole

Producer: Diana Hentulescu, Moukda Production

Country: France

  • Unspoken                                          

Director: Misia Mormina

Producer: Engin Karabagli, Emegro B.V.

Country: Netherlands


  • Finding Frida                                     

Director: Hilde Kristin Kjøs

Producer: Bjørn-Morten Nerland, Stargate Media AS

Country: Norway

  • Fruits on the Tube                                         

Director: Klaas-Harm de Boer

Producer: Vincent Lindenboom, Next Empire BV

Country: Netherlands

  • Swarm                                   

Director: Maarten Isaak de Heer

Producer: Maartem Isaak de Heer, Menetekel Film

Country: Netherlands


  • Beyond the Face                                        

Director: Anja Resman

Producer: Bostjan Potokar, School of Arts – University of Nova Gorica

Country: Slovenia

  • Desire to Win                         

Director: Michaela Rezova       

Producer: Zuzana Bukovinska, Academy of Arts, Architecture & Design in Prague

Country: Czech Republic

  • Forgive                                              

Director: Alzbeta Macakova Misejkova

Producer: Jiri Pecinovsky, Film and TV School of Academy of Performing Arts in Prague – FAMU

Country: Czech Republic

  • Holes                                     

Director: Sofiya Kruglikova

Producer: Academy of Fine Arts and Design – University of Ljubljana

Country: Slovenia

  • Kurent                                    

Director: Miha Reja

Producer: Bostjan Potokar, School of Arts – University of Nova Gorica

Country: Slovenia

  • Light Year Apart                                            

Director: Viktoria Taranova

Producer: Michaela Cermakova, Film and TV Faculty of the Academy of the Performing Arts – VŠMU

Country: Slovakia

  • Orange You Glad                                           

Director: Daniel Sterlin-Altman

Producer: Daniel Sterlin-Altman, Filmuniversität Babelsberg Konrad Wolf

Country: Germany

  • Silo                            

Director: Ema Nemcovicova

Producer: Film and TV Faculty of the Academy of the Performing Arts – VŠMU

Country: Slovakia        

  • The Last Drop                                    

Director: Anna Tokes

Producer: Jozsef Fulop, Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design Budapest – MOME

Country: Hungary

  • The Perfect Gift                                              

Director: Kristina Penava

Producer: The Academy of Arts and Culture in Osijek

Country: Croatia

CEE Animation is supported by the Creative Europe – MEDIA Programme of the European Union and co-funded by state funds and foundations and professional organisations from Slovenia (DSAF, Slovene Animated Film Association), Czech Republic (ASAF, Association of Czech Animation), Hungary (HAPA, Hungarian Animation Producers Association), Poland (SPPA, Polish Animation Producers Association) and Slovakia (APAF, Slovak Association of Animated Film Producers).