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The Animation Production Days (APD) Conference Programme Addresses the Challenges Facing the European Animation Industry

The APD Conference, part of the 16th Animation Production Days, is taking place on 4 May from 1.45 pm to 5.30 pm in the L-Bank Rotunda in Stuttgart. Complementing the one-to-one meetings of the APD’s Co-Production and Financing Market, the conference consists of two sections and provides a platform to discuss current developments in the industry.

The first part of the conference is entitled “Enable! Case Studies and Market Trends”. Moderated by APD curator Prof. Lilian Klages, it will encompass three key topics facing the industry: from the new financing and distribution strategies for European animated films, through the potential of new technologies for animation production, to improving the social and environmental sustainability of the industry. Emely Christians, Managing Director of Ulysses Films, will share her insights into the planning and realisation of the German-British co-production “The Amazing Maurice”, based on the book by Terry Pratchett. Director and producer Hasraf “HaZ” Dulull, who is also FMX programme chair this year, will talk about the profound impact that new technologies such as real-time engines are having on the production of animated films and series, and will take us behind the scenes of his latest animated feature, “RIFT”. Tom Box, co-founder of the multi-award-winning Blue Zoo Studio (UK), the world’s first B Corp certified (Certification for social added value and environmental sustainability) animation studio, will discuss the certification process and why he is calling upon the animation and VFX industry to join him.

In the second part of the conference, the Content Briefing Session, APD curator Christophe Erbès will ask four representatives from the broadcasters about their programming strategies with regard to animation, which types of content they are looking for and what changes and trends they are anticipating. The representatives are Dr Astrid Plenk, Managing and Programming Director of KiKA; Zia Bales, Lead Acquisitions, Partnerships & Coproductions at WarnerMedia Kids & Family EMEA; Kerstin Viehbach, Head of Commissioning & Development (Fiction) at SUPER RTL, and Morten Skov Hansen, Director of Kids Programming at DR (Danish Broadcasting Corporation).


Only accredited APD participants have access to the on-site conference this year. However, holders of an industry accreditation (HYBRID or ONLINE PRO) for the Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film or an ITFS & FMX Combi ticket can watch the APD Conference via a live stream.


This year’s APD is planned as a hybrid event. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the events taking place on site will be held on a slightly smaller scale than usual. Around 100 of the approximately 150 participants from 22 countries are expected to participate in person in Stuttgart.


At the APD Co-Production and Funding Market, online and on-site attendees will discuss 35 selected animation projects in pre-scheduled one-to-one meetings between 4-6 May.


An overview of all the selected projects can be found on the APD website at:



An overview of the participating companies can be found here:


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