Cut the Mustard @ Manchester Animation Festival 2023
Last week the Cut the Mustard team attended Manchester Animation Festival, our second time at the event. We couldn't attend for the same amount of time as before, so we ran a supercharged version, impressively fitting the same amount of events into one day as we did over three last time.
We firstly attended the Short Film Panorama, where we saw a selection of the best short films in circulation at the moment. A unanimous favourite of the team was My Name is Edgar and I Have a Cow (ironically the very first film we saw), though some special shoutouts to Boat People (a heartfelt story of immigrant communities) and Maurice's Bar (a true tale of the second ever queer bar in 1900s Paris). After last year's showcase gave us access to some of the films we'd see in the 2023 Oscars short film catergory, we hope to see some of these reapear there too.
We followed up with New Animated Voices, a showcase of new talent in the festival circuit. Hopefully one day we can sit and watch one of our own films on the big screen here! A personal favourite was Pipes, a short about a plummer called out to fix some pipes at a European gay club.
Next the team split up, where El, Amy and Fin went to watch White Plastic Sky, a hungarian feature film about a society where people are turned into trees when they become 50. A unique film in style and technique and story, it explored big themes and ethics. I headed off the BBC children's panel, where I learned more about the winners of last year's BBC Ignite, and shed light on the BBC's comissioning guides and what kind of shows they are looking to create in the years ahead. After meeting Sarah and the commissioning team in London last month, it was great to continue to learn more about the TV industry.
We then finished up the day by attending the Festivus meetup at the Gasworks bar. Our second year attending, it was great to bump into old friends, new ones and industry contacts. We chatted about everything animation, and got some great advice from mentors and industry heroes.
It's all in a days work, people!
We'll likely be back next year, and shall hopefully be attending some other animation festivals around the country and beyond (Annecy, anyone?). If you said hi keep in touch, and we'll see you around at other events soon.