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The 2021 OIAF poster, by Amanda Bonaiuto and Angela Stempel.

Animation Festival confirms 2021 will be online

By Greggory Clark on April 30, 2021

The 45th edition of Ottawa’s International Animation Festival (OIAF) will be held online and extended to 14 days to give viewers the time and flexibility to explore on-demand programs from home.

“Online OIAF in 2020 was a huge success for showcasing films,” says Managing Director Kelly Neall about last year’s event, “and the artist and industry talks were a hit with the animation community. This year will be even better.”

As one of the biggest and best-known animation festivals worldwide, the OIAF’s 2020 event drew a virtual audience of industry, students and fans from across North America and around the world. The local festival has been one of the world’s leading animation events since 1976, bringing 30,000+ artists and industry to Ottawa for the annual in-person event. OIAF is on the Academy Awards short film qualifying list.


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The Animation Conference, OIAF’s industry event, will move online again as well, offering networking opportunities that will give delegates unprecedented access to development executives from around the world.

Organizers were hoping that an in-person event could be possible in fall 2021, “but the current forecast for the pandemic indicates that a safe and enjoyable event would be difficult to stage.”

“Having to run online again is not what we had envisioned this year,” says Artistic Director Chris Robinson. “But so be it. We’re up for the challenge again and we will still give audiences the usual OIAF mix of entertaining, hilarious, inspiring, infuriating and pleasantly bizarre as we all eagerly await a return to being in person again in 2022.”

OIAF is still accepting entries for this year’s online edition. As always, there is no entry fee. The deadline is May 31.

OIAF 2021 will take place online from September 22 to October 3, 2021. Visit for more information about OIAF 2021.