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US festival premiere of Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis’s award-winning NFB animated short The Flying Sailor


October 6, 2022 – Montreal – National Film Board of Canada

Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis’s National Film Board of Canada (NFB) animated short The Flying Sailor will make its much-anticipated US festival premiere this fall at the New York City Short Film Festival and AFI FEST in Los Angeles.

This is the latest work by the Calgary-based animation duo of Wendy and Amanda, who shared Best Animated Short Film Academy Award nominations for When the Day Breaks (1999) and Wild Life (2011). Wendy was also nominated individually for Strings (1991).

The Flying Sailor will stream online from October 20 to 23 as part of the 18th ​NYC Short Film Festival, followed by an in-person screening in LA on Saturday, November 5, at 4 p.m. as part of AFI FEST’s Shorts Program 3 at the TCL Chinese Theatre.

The Flying Sailor was inspired by an incredible true-life story from the 1917 Halifax Explosion, the largest accidental non-nuclear explosion in history.

This film comes to the US after its world premiere at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival in France, a North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and acclaim on the 2022 global festival circuit.

Awards to date:

  • Best Narrative Film, Countryside Animafest Cyprus
  • Audience Award for being one of the 10 favourite foreign films, São Paulo International Short Film Festival, Brazil
  • Canadian Film Institute Award for Best Canadian Animation, Ottawa International Animation Film Festival, Canada
  • Best Animated Short, Calgary International Film Festival, Canada

More about The Flying Sailor (7 min 45 s)
Press kit: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/the-flying-sailor

  • Two ships collide in a harbour, an explosion shatters a city, and a sailor is blasted skyward. With ears ringing, blood pulsing and guts heaving, he soars high above the mayhem and towards the great unknown.
  • Inspired by the incredible story of a man who was blown two kilometres through the air by the Halifax Explosion, the animated short The Flying Sailor is at once a bold blend of comedy, suspense and philosophy and an exhilarating contemplation of the wonder and fragility of existence.
  • The film was produced and executive-produced by David Christensen for the NFB’s North West Studio in Edmonton, Alberta.

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French version here | Version française ici.

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  • About the NFB

    The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is a leader in exploring animation as an artform, a storytelling medium and innovative content for emerging platforms. It produces trailblazing animated works both in its Montreal studios and across  the country, and it works with many of the world’s leading creators on international co-productions. NFB productions have won more than 7,000 awards, including seven Oscars for NFB animation and seven grand prizes at the Annecy festival. To access this unique content, visit NFB.ca.