April 23, 2018 – Montreal – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)
WALL, a feature-length animated film written by David Hare, the renowned British playwright, screenwriter and two-time Oscar nominee (for The Hours and The Reader), and directed by award-winning Canadian filmmaker Cam Christiansen, marks the National Film Board of Canada’s (NFB) return to the coveted feature film competition section of the Annecy International Animation Film Festival. The film, which explores both sides of the wall separating Israel and Palestine, will be screened with the writer and director as well as NFB producer David Christensen in attendance. The world’s largest event dedicated to animation, the Annecy Festival welcomes the industry’s leading creators and professionals from June 11 to 16, 2018. This year, 10 feature films have been selected for the official competition, with another 13 screening out of competition. The NFB also has five short films in competition at Annecy, along with a virtual-reality work being presented out of competition.
“David Hare’s nuanced script about an extremely raw situation was the jumping-off point for the incredible work that director and animator Cam Christiansen has done. Taking risks with story, with form, and with technology—that’s what we wanted to do by creating WALL— and I’m so pleased that the world’s premiere animation film festival has recognized that work by screening WALL at the festival.ˮ – David Christensen
“I am thrilled to be in competition at Annecy! We always felt we had broken a lot of animation rules and conventions working on WALL, so it is very satisfying to have our work recognized by the most prominent animation festival in the world. It’s amazing!ˮ
– Cam Christiansen
WALL by Cam Christiansen (80 min)
Screening in English with French subtitles
WALL is written by and features preeminent British playwright David Hare. Hare’s body of work spans 35 years and is best known for pieces that deftly explore socio-political issues both at home and abroad. The 80-minute WALL follows Hare on a trip to the Middle East to examine—from his point of view—the impact that the wall separating Israel and Palestine has had on the people of the region.
Using advanced animation tools and 3D motion-capture footage, director Cam Christiansen employs a distinctive handcrafted approach that conveys the reality of the 708-kilometre barrier as no film has before. Rich with rhythmic, raw imagery, WALL takes an in-depth look at the “fence” that has forever united, divided and changed communities—while brilliantly capturing the emotions surrounding this massive reminder of unrest.
Revealing and passionate insights from renowned Israeli novelist David Grossman, Professor Neill Lochery of London University, Professor Sari Nusseibeh of Al-Quds University and Ramallah-based attorney Raja Shehadeh are all framed by Hare’s probing, restlessly curious mind, attuned to the incongruities and contradictions of life in the shadow of the wall.
WALL is produced by the NFB’s David Christensen and Bonnie Thompson. North West Studio head David Christensen is the executive producer.
About the filmmaker
Cam Christiansen is an award-winning director, animator and innovator in the world of 3D animation and digital filmmaking whose films have screened at the Sundance Film Festival and TIFF, and made the latter’s Top Ten list of Canadian short films twice (with I Have Seen the Future and 5 Hole: Tales of Hockey Erotica). WALL is his first feature-length film and the second project he’s directed with the NFB, after the short The Real Place.
Electronic Press Kit | Images, trailers, synopsis: WALL
Annecy International Animation Film Festival