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Second ANIMAFILM Festival Announces International Jury Members


The Organizing Committee of the 2nd ANIMAFILM Baku International Animation Festival has announced the members of its jury, composed of professionals from Germany, Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran, and the Czech Republic.

Two international juries and one national childrens’ jury will evaluate animated films and screenplays of the competition program of the festival, which aims to support talent and further the development of animation.

In addition, every audience member in the festival will be able to make his or her own contribution to the evaluation of animated films by voting on them. At the end of the voting, an Audience Favor Award will be presented.

The international jury will be led by Masud Panaсhi well-known director and animator of Azerbaijan.

The ANIMAFILM Organizing Committee also plans to award a Golden Boat trophy at the festival to someone who has made great contributions to the development of animation in Azerbaijan.

The members of the jury will also actively participate in the festival’s noncompetitive and professional programs.

The ANIMAFILM Organizing Committee is pleased to present the members of all three juries:

1) Members of the Jury for Animated Films

Masud Panachi (Germany)

Director, animator, animation artist, and screenwriter Masud Panachi was born in the city of Zanjan, Iran in 1943. His father was the famous writer and poet Abbas Panachi Makulu. In 1946, the Panachi family moved to Baku.

Masud Panachi graduated from the Azim Azimzade Art School in 1966, then from the School of Art of the All-Union State of Cinematography Institute as well as from animation directing courses affiliated with the same institute in 1972. Masud Panachi studied under famous directors of animation cinema such as Ivan Ivanov and Fyodor Khitruk.

In 1974, he won first place with his film Why the Cloud Cries (Bulud niyə ağlayır) in the 7th All-Union Festival held in Baku. In 1979, he was given a participation award for his film Legend of Maiden’s Tower (Qız qalası əfsanəsi) in the 12th All-Union Cinema Festival held in Ashgabat. Masud Panachi is the author of the Azerbaijani cult classic animated film Miss Tik-Tik (Tıq-tıq xanım), or Pıs-pısa xanım və siçan bəy (Miss Pis-Pisa and Mr. Mouse).

He has been living in Germany since 1979. He has participated in the production of nearly 60 animated films in Berlin Central Telestudio and in other animation studios. One of Panachi’s most recent works is the animated film Breaking the Silence (Zerstörter Friede), which was created in 2012 with the support of the Azerbaijani diaspora in Berlin to illustrate the tragedy of the city of Khojaly.

In 2018, Masud Panachi was awarded the Golden Boat trophy by ANIMAFILM for his contributions to Azerbaijani animation.

Jahangir Suleymanov (Russian Federation)

Jahangir Suleymanov was born on January 27th, 1970 in Baku and was raised in a creative family. From 1988 until 1989, he enrolled in a course for animators of the All-Union State Institute of Cinematography at the Azerbaijanfilm movie studio led by Elchin Hami Akhundov. In 1992, he continued his education in Saint Petersburg. In 2002-2003, he worked as the director and art director of the series 300 Stories About Petersburgians based on the novels of Daniel Harms. Since 2003, he has been director of several TV series including Smeshariki (known as “Kikoriki”), Pin-code, Tima and Toma, and The Fixies. From 2013 to 2015, he collaborated on with the First Russian Charity Series Flying Animals. Since 2017, he has been director of the series The Pirate School and the leading director of the animation series Cosmic Academy. In 2018, Jahangir Suleymanov was a member of the International Jury of 1st ANIMAFILM festival.

Samir Salahov (Azerbaijan)

He is an artist who has been active in fields such as animation, painting, digital art and street art. He graduated from Azerbaijan State University of Architecture and Industry, and he is currently involved in architectural work as well as his art. He has participated in exhibitions in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Russia as well as projects by YARAT and ARTIM. Most of his works depict people and animals in an ironic and humorous style with strong graphic patterns, contrasting colors and emphasized characteristics.

He won the Best Azerbaijani Short Animated Film award for his work Continuity (Aramsızlıq) in the 1st ANIMAFILM festival (2018).

Miroslava Janicatova (Czech Republic)

Miroslava Janicatova completed her master’s degree in Theater and Cinema Theory and History at Palacky University Olomouc. She also studied Film Restauration in University of Udine in Italy. She was at the beginning of Association of Czech Animation Film and Visegrad Animation Forum (now known as CEE Animation Forum). She worked as a Head of Industry Department of International Festival of Animated Films Anifilm in Trebon and she was also part of Industry Department of International Film Festival Karlovy Vary. She led an international project to restore the puppets of famous Czech animation director Jiri Trnka. Miroslava Janicatova’s articles on animation are regularly published in famous journals like Cinepur and others.

Afet Ilhamqizi (Azerbaijan)

Afet Ilhamqizi was born in Baku. She graduated from the History of Art at Azerbaijan State University of Culture and Arts. She has been working for Azerbaijan State Television (AzTV) since 2011. She is the script writer, director and host of the TV series Palitra ART, which covers famous Azerbaijani and foreign artists. She is also the author of a series of documentaries entitled Azerbaijani Animation.

2) Members of the Jury for Screenplays

Ramiz Fataliyev (Azerbaijan)

Ramiz Fataliyev was born in Baku in 1946. He is a well known cinema screenwriter, People’s Artist of Azerbaijan, Honored Art Worker, and laureate of the Republic State Award. In 1972, he graduated from the Course for Higher Directors and Screenwriters in affiliation with the All-Union State of Cinematography Institute in Moscow. He worked as the head editor of the Azerbaijanfilm studio in 1985 to 1986, then as director there from 1986 to 1995. He was Vice President of the Soviet Association for Political and Detective Novels from 1987 to 1991. He was a member of Azerbaijan’s Supreme Soviet and then a member of Parliament from 1990 to 1995. He has written and directed dozens of films.

Zeynab Qurbani Faryad (Iran)

She was born in 1989. She is a photographer, screenwriter, animation director, and illustrator. She completed her bachelor’s degree in photojournalism at Ardabil University of Applied Science and Technology (UAST) and studied textile design at Semnan University.

She was the director of the film Qarğa (Crow), which won the Best Animation award at the Razavi International Festival and Hassanat Festival in 2011. The same film was successfully represented in Italy’s FICI International Children’s Film Festival (2012) and at the VAFI & RAFI International Festival of Animation Films for Children and Youth in Croatia (2014).

Her screenplay The Nakhkesh (Süzülən insan) won the Golden Boat certificate for Best Original Screenplay for a Short Animated Film in the 1st ANIMAFILM festival in Baku in 2018.

Intiqam Qasimzada (Azerbaijan)

He is a literary critic, translator, member of Azerbaijan Writers’ Union since 1985, and an Honored Art Worker. He was a member of the screenplay editorial board for the Azerbaijanfilm studio from 1969 to 1974. He has worked in numerous positions for the Azerbaijan magazine since 1979, and he is currently serving as Editor in Chief of the magazine. He has been the author of the literary television almanac “Bayati” since 1980. Several animated films and documentaries have been produced based on his screenplays. He co-wrote the screenplay for Miss Tik-Tik (Tıq-tıq xanım), or Pıs-pısa xanım və siçan bəy (Miss Pis-Pisa and Mr. Mouse) with Masud Panachi.

Gulshan Tofikqizi (Azerbaijan)

She is an editorial writer and screenwriter. She is a member of Azerbaijan Writers’ Union and Azerbaijan Cinematographers’ Union. She worked as a animator and senior editor for the Azerbaijanfilm studio from 1971 to 2004. She has been a screenwriter for the Azanfilm animation studio since 2004. Five films have been produced based on her screenplays in recent years. In the 1980s, she also worked contract jobs for the State Radio Commission. She is a member of the New Contemporary (“Новый современник”) International Writers’ Union, and she is the only Azerbaijani woman to have won the title of “Eastern Queen of Wisdom” on the international Litkonkurs.ru site. Gulshan Tofikqizi is the great-granddaughter of Agha Musa Naghiyev, the famous millionaire from Azerbaijan’s history.

Gulshan Tofikqizi has won many international literature competitions, and she is a regular writer for the Literary Azerbaijan (Ədəbi Azərbaycan) journal and Russia’s My Family (Моя Семья) journal. She has published nearly 20 essays and novellas.

3) Members of Kids Jury

Aydan Kerimli (Azerbaijan)

Aydan is a pupil of Integration Training Boarding School No.11 in Bilgeh settlement. She is a pupil of the GURAMA childrens’ animation studio created by the school’s director, Gulnara Abdullayeva, and animator Elchin Hami Akhundov. She is the author of the animated film Tommy in the Spring Holiday (Tomi bahar bayramında) produced by the GURAMA studio in 2017.

Beril Karaoglu (Turkey)

Beril lives in Istanbul. She is in fourth grade and is 10 years old. She loves music and animated films. She plays piano and dreams of being a fashion designer in the future.

Fatima Allahverdiyeva (Azerbaijan)

Fatima currently lives in Baku. She is a 7th-grade pupil at School no. 257. She is 12 years old. She loves to draw pictures and to watch animated films. She intends to major in animation in the future.

Nilufar Azimzada (Azerbaijan)

Nilufar currently lives in the Masazir settlement of Baku. She is 14 years old. She is an 8th-grade pupil at the Technical Humanitarian Lyceum. She goes to music school, plays piano, and writes poems and stories. She is the author of a book entitled Smart Doll. She loves to draw pictures, and she takes private lessons from a professional artist.

Zarif Qasimova (Azerbaijan)

She currently lives in Sumgayit. She is a 2nd-grade pupil at the Gymnasium for Fine Arts affiliated to Azerbaijan National Conservatory. She is 8 years old. She studies art. She is very interested in art and animation.