Tokyo Anime Award Festival 2021 Competition
Regulations for Short Animation
Tokyo Anime Award Festival 2021 (TAAF2021) is an international animated film festival organized by the Association of Japanese Animations and The TAAF Executive Committee, and co-hosted by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. The festival is run by the TAAF office, established under the TAAF2021 Executive Committee with the support of various companies, organizations, and individuals who endorse TAAF2021’s objectives.
The aim of TAAF2021 is to collate and screen high-quality animated films of superior originality, provide excitement and inspiration to the audience as well as creators, cultivate new talent, and contribute to the development and promotion of animation culture and industry.
- Festival Period: March 12 (Fri) – 15 (Mon), 2021
- Venue: Ikebukuro, Tokyo
2. Competition Criteria
“Short animated film of less than 30 minutes in length” created using any technique which meets the following criteria:
*Any animated films longer than 30 min. but less than 60 min. shall be applied to the category of Feature Animation first. The TAAF office will contact the applicant later to notify which category is appropriate for the film.
- The film must have been completed on, or after, January 1, 2019 (regardless of country of origin, and whether it is professional, amateur, or student work).
- The film that has been theatrically released, broadcast, or distributed for profit in Japan for a certain period prior to March 11(Thu), 2021 is not eligible for the Competition. Screening at film festivals and previews are not considered “for-profit” herein.
- The film that has been nominated to TAAF in the past will not be accepted.
- Each applicant shall upload his/her film for the Competition through the TAAF application form in MP4 format (audio Codec: AAC, video Codec: H.264). For further information about specifications, see 3.3) Screener below. Preliminary selection will be conducted based on the uploaded material. As the format required for the final judging process is either Apple ProRes (1920 x 1080 pix.). Please make prior arrangements.
- No submission fee is required.
- Submission Deadline: October 31 (Sat), 2020
Once submissions have closed, the Preliminary Selection Committee will select the nominees for the final judging. The result of the selection process will be communicated to successful applicants, and the list of nominated films will be posted on the TAAF2021 official website.
The nominated films will be publicly screened at designated theaters during the festival period in Tokyo, during which time final judging will be conducted by the Competition Jury.
Please verify the Competition criteria, and make your submission online by providing all required information using the application form (see below).
We look forward to receiving films brimming with creativity that will bear the future of the animation industry.
- Access the application form by clicking on the button found below and submit.
- No submission fee is required.
- Upload the animation work in MP4 format via the “TAAF2021 Application Form” for the preliminary selection process (see Clause 3.3).
- Contact the TAAF office with further questions, if any.
1) Access the application form (available in Japanese and English) by clicking on the button found below, and fill in the required information. Upload the form together with the following:
- 3 still images of the film (1920×1080, 300dpi or higher, jpeg)
- 1 director’s photo (head shot, 1920×1080, 300dpi or higher, jpeg)
- English dialogue list synchronized with the time code
The animated film with dialogue in any language (including narration or the like necessary for understanding the story) must be submitted with a screening version with English subtitles and an English dialogue list synchronized with the time code. Upload the English dialogue list together with the other required materials such as still images and director’s headshot.
Video material for the preliminary selection process will only be accepted in MP4 format using the TAAF2021 application form.
Specification for the video material is as follows:
Audio Codec: AAC
Video Codec: H.264
Definition: 1920 x 1080 (or less if aspect ratio is not 16:9)
File Name: only alpha-numerical characters / extension: .mp4
Bit rate (recommended):
Video bit rate: 10Mbps – 20Mbps
Audio bit rate: 320Kbps
Audio sample rate: 48kHz
*If you are not able to submit using the application form for any special reason, please communicate the specific details to us using the inquiry form.
4. Selection Process
1) Preliminary Selection/Final Judging
- TAAF2021 Preliminary Selection Committee shall select the nominated films from among the works submitted for the Short Animation category.
- After the TAAF office has informed applicants of the successful nominated films via email, the full list of nominated films will be posted on the official website.
- No cancelation will be accepted once the submission has been made. The TAAF office will not answer any inquiries regarding reason for selection.
- The nominated films will be publicly screened during TAAF2021, at which time final judging will be conducted by the Competition Jury.
2) Competition, Preliminary Selection Committee, and Jury
- TAAF2021 shall appoint three or more Preliminary Selection Committee members to select the nominees.
- TAAF2021 shall appoint three or more Competition Jury members during the Festival to conduct the judging.
- Committee and Jury members shall not be directly involved in the production or distribution of any animated films being considered under the category.
- During the TAAF2021 period, the appointed Competition Jury shall, after impartial deliberation, select the winners of the following prizes:
- Grand Prize, Short Animation Category (a cash award of 500,000 yen)
- Award of Excellence, Short Animation Category (a cash award of 100,000 yen)
- Toshima City Award
- Special Prize and cash award that may be established by at the discretion of the Competition Jury or supporting organization
3) Award for Best Student Film
Starting from TAAF2021, the festival will newly establish the Award for Best Student Film (a cash award of 100,000 yen) for the Short Animation Competition. The details pertaining to eligible entries and the judging process are as follows:
- The film must be submitted for the Short Animation Competition
- The director must be a student enrolled in an educational institution in Japan.(Nationality is not a factor) Alternatively, the film must be submitted through an educational institution which recognizes the director as a student.
*If the director has graduated from the educational institution, the piece will be accepted as a “student film” as long as it was created when the director was a student.
- “Yes” must be selected for the “Student Film” section in the application form
*If “yes” is not selected, the submission will automatically become ineligible for the award.
If all the above criteria are met, the film will become automatically eligible for the award.
The Preliminary Selection Committee for the Short Animation Competition will serve as the jury for the Best Student Film.
5. Screening Format
1) Screening Format
The nominated films shall be screened in the following format for both general screening and final judging by the Competition Jury: Apple ProRes (1920 x 1080 pixel).
Therefore the applicant of the nominated film must provide the film in the relevant format. The TAAF office will communicate detailed specifications to the relevant applicants.
The nominated films shall be screened in two languages, English and Japanese, using subtitles.
- If the film contains dialogue, it must be accompanied with English subtitles and an English dialogue list synchronized with time code.
- English dialogue list must be uploaded together with other required materials (i.e. 3 still images, 1 director’s photo) with the application form.
- TAAF2021 shall translate and produce Japanese subtitles from English for the nominated films in the Competition.
- For this reason, in addition to the screening version, applicants must provide a downloadable version of the nominated film with English subtitles.
- TAAF2021 will translate and produce English subtitles for the nominated films in Japanese. However, the applicant must provide the timecode for subtitles and a synchronized dialogue list. In addition, we recommend that the applicant prepare the translation from Japanese to English.
One director for each nominated film shall be invited to attend TAAF2021 with the following provided:
[Director Residing Outside Japan]
- Accommodation fee (max. 5 nights during March 11 to 15, 2021/single occupancy at a hotel designated by TAAF)
- Actual travel cost (max. 50,000 yen, no advance payment, paid in Japanese yen upon arrival) *demand a receipt for flight ticket
[Director Residing in Japan]
- Accommodation fee (max. 5 nights during March 11 to 15, 2021/single occupancy at a hotel designated by TAAF) only for those residing outside of the Tokyo Metropolitan area
- Actual travel cost (max. 20,000 yen, no advance payment, paid in Japanese yen upon arrival) *demand a receipt for travel cost
Please note that other fees (such as phone calls from hotel room, room service, laundry, additional days of accommodation, etc.) will not be borne by TAAF2021.
Copyright of the submitted film belongs to the applicant. Each applicant must be the copyright holder of all elements of the film, including original work, script, characters, direction, video, still image and music, or have obtained consent from the copyright holder of such elements. The foregoing shall also apply to submissions by proxy. TAAF2021 assumes that the applicant has taken the responsibility to obtain all copyright consent such as screening rights.
2) Screening Material (ie. Nominated Film) for Final Judging
- All costs incurred for the TAAF2021 screening material to be shipped, insured, and clear customs shall be borne by the applicant.
- Screening materials that have been sent in accordance with the stipulated guidelines, shall be handled and screened under the best possible conditions by TAAF2021. In the event of any loss or damage due to TAAF2021, the latter shall compensate an amount up to the cost incurred to create and ship a new copy (Do not send the master copy; This must be kept by the applicant).
- TAAF2021 shall not be responsible for material that is not within the stipulated guidelines and for any technical problems during the screening
- The nominated films will be screened up to a total of three times during the festival, including Competition screening. Please note that screening fee will not be paid to the applicants.
(There will be 1 to 2 rounds of Competition screening, and 1 special screening after the announcement of the award-winners).
- After TAAF2021, there may be the television broadcast of the nominated films for the purpose of promoting the works and TAAF in Japan. Please note that broadcast fee will not be paid to applicants. (see Clause 7.4).
- Materials submitted to TAAF2021, both for the preliminary selection process and final judging, may be copied and/or re-formatted for the purpose of selection or screening.
- Please note that materials submitted for selection and screening purposes will not be returned to the applicant.
No inquiry or questions in connection with the preliminary selection and final judging process will be entertained by the Preliminary Selection Committee, Competition Jury, TAAF2021 Executive Committee, and TAAF office.
4) Promotion and Archives
(1) There will be one free screening(100 – 200 pax) of the nominated films in Japan after TAAF2021 for the purpose of promoting the films and TAAF.
The plan is to invite Japanese film distributors and animation creators to this screening. Please note that screening fee will not be paid for this.
(2) There may be the television broadcast of the nominated films in Japan after TAAF2021 only for the purpose of promoting the works and TAAF. Please note that broadcast fee will not be paid to applicants.
Please also note that there will be an interview shoot with the creators of the works participating in the festival.
If you do not wish to be broadcasted for any reason, such as for the risk of violating the regulation of other festivals that you are going to submit, please contact the TAAF office in advance.
(3) Parts of the nominated films, including still images and director’s photo, may be edited, broadcast, screened, exhibited or posted on the TAAF official website, SNS account, and/or by means of any medium, including but not limited to, theater, TV, and Internet.
Also excerpts of the nominated film or trailers (if any) may be utilized for the purpose of promoting TAAF.
TAAF may for a certain period retain nominated film-related materials (eg. screening material, trailer, still images, metadata) in its archive, and post them on the TAAF official website.
5) Video Package
For the promotion of TAAF and animation culture, there is a possibility that the nominated films may be broadcast or distributed by means of DVD or the like. In such a case, TAAF office will make prior contact with the relevant applicants, and make a decision based upon consultation.
It is deemed that all films submitted for the TAAF2021 Competition have agreed to the above specified conditions, and to its screening at TAAF2021 upon submission of the application form.
Tokyo Anime Award Festival Office
(The Association of Japanese Animations)