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The most 'animated' edition of the International Short Film Festival Mecal Pro comes to an end

The 15th edition of the International Short Film and Animation Festival of Barcelona, known as Mecal Pro, has ended after 350 short films were selected from over five thousand and were projected for a month. An increase in participation, the extension of the festival’s length and the importance given to the animation genre were the main features of this year’s edition. This year’s biggest winners were ‘El otro’ (‘The other’) by Jorge Dorado and ‘Misterio’ (‘Mistery’) by Chema García Ibarra. The FX Animation new award goes to the Dutch film ‘Junkyard’ and the best international short film award to ‘Solitudes’, by French director Liova Jedlicki.

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29 April 2013 10:56 PM

by

Àlex Ramis

Barcelona (CNA).\u2013 The 15th edition of the International Short Film and Animation Festival of Barcelona, known as Mecal Pro, has ended after 350 short films were selected from over five thousand and were projected for a month. With participation increasing by 15.5%, the festival has turned into one of the most important short film events in Europe. This edition has also ended with two novelties. On the one hand, organisers extended it to four weeks instead of the traditional three. On the other hand, more importance was lent to animation. A new award was created in this genre, which was won by the Dutch film \u2018Junkyard\u2019. The best international short film award goes to \u2018Solitudes\u2019, by the French director Liova Jedlicki.


\u201CWe are resisting the crisis. And not only resisting, but also growing\u201D. With these optimistic words the director of Mecal Pro, Roberto Barrueco, started his speech at the closing ceremony of the festival. And he was right. The festival has increased participation this year by 15.5% over the previous edition. 5,200 short films were sent to the Mecal Pro from all over the world. In fact, 80% of the pieces sent to this event came from abroad.

The international range of the festival is one of its strongest points. Every year, the organisation chooses one country as a \u201Cguest country\u201D to promote its quality short films. For this 15th edition the chosen country was Finland, with especial mention for the Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki.

Apart from this special section, the Mecal Pro festival includes another four sections with its respective awards. Projections are organised based on these sections: international, \u2018obliqua\u2019, animation and documentary. The \u2018Obliqua\u2019 section includes the most daring short films presented at the festival and rewards creativity and originality.

350 short films of the first 5,200 where projected at the festival, 25% more than last year. Of these, only a select group of 150 were up for awards. The two biggest winners of this year\u2019s festival were \u2018El otro\u2019 (\u2018The other\u2019) by  Jorge Dorado, which won best script and best photography awards, and \u2018Misterio\u2019 (\u2018Mistery\u2019) by Chema García Ibarra, which won best \u2018obliqua\u2019 film award and young judges award. The best international short film award goes to \u2018Solitudes\u2019, by French director Liova Jedlicki.

Animation, an essential part of this edition

According to the 2012 Guide to the Spanish Animation Sector, by 2017 animation in Spain will be worth 879 million euros. And considering that 60% of production and business of this sector belongs to Catalonia, it makes sense that Mecal Pro looks to animation this year.

For that reason, the festival incorporated a new award category in this 15th edition: FX Animation Prize, which went to the film \u2018Junkyard\u2019 by Dutch director Hisko Hulsing, an essential step, according to the organization, to reward this \u201Cgrowing genre\u201D. With this aim, organizers also increased the number of animation short films projected during the festival.

New challenges for future editions

The progress made in this edition is not enough for the organization. Roberto Barrueco, director of Mecal Pro, stated at the closing ceremony that \u201Cfuture editions will give more space to animation\u201D. He also said that the extension of the festival to four weeks could be improved. Next year, he says, organizers will \u201Ctry to specialize each weekend in one of the four sections of the Mecal Pro\u201D.

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  • The closing ceremony of the 2013 Mecal Pro Festival (by A. Ramis)

  • The closing ceremony of the 2013 Mecal Pro Festival (by A. Ramis)