28 Dec 2015

Bulgarian animation film after the early 1990s

01 July, 2013 – 01 July, 2016

Author: Prof. Nadezhda Mikhailova (Marinchevska), Screen Arts Department

A comparative analysis will be made of the state of affairs in contemporary animation film in Bulgaria and the tradition of the previous Bulgarian animation school. Creating a fake market situation in indie film, distorted understanding of producer’s role as well as production coming almost to naught in 1995/96 had a long-lasting detrimental effect on the informative and creative aspects of Bulgarian animation.
A major issue in the project will be the analysis of disrupted communicativeness of cartoon animation as well as of almost missing distribution. It is a complex issue. The withering-away of funny cartoons as a leading model is a global rather than solely national problem witnessed for two decades now at international animation events. The project is supposed to show as to why seeking a contact with the audiences is no longer relevant and how Bulgarian animation film is positioned in the global context. The new subjects that have emerged in the new animation will be also explored: eroticism, the shifted accent in social satire or documentary animation.
Particular analyses will cover the crisis and its partial overcoming in the work of such established authors as Stoian Dukov, Ivan Veselinov, Slav Bakalov, Henry Kulev, Nikolay Todorov, etc. Experienced animators such as Andrei Tsvetkov, Anna Haralampieva, Gospodin Nedelchev, Antoaneta Chetrafilova, etc., who have taken to directing, maintaining the tradition of Bulgarian classical animation school and at the same time bringing in new thematic and stylistic elements. The new generations of animators such as Vesela Dancheva, Ivan Bogdanov, Boris Despodov, Velislava Gospodinova among others will be target of a thorough research meant to bring to the fore contemporary trends in Bulgarian animation art and its fitting in with the global context of world animation with its new dramatic principles and the development of various visual concepts.
The renewal of international animation festivals in Bulgaria will also be target of research.
Bulgarian animators, who live abroad, will also be covered by the analysis. If applying rigorous criteria, works by such authors as Theodore Ushev, Velislav Kazakov, Rumen Petkov, etc., cannot be ranked among Bulgarian animation films, still, the issue of evaluating their work is far more complicated than the producer’s simply belonging to another country (mostly Canada of US). In some of these films Bulgarian national tradition is tangible, while their contacts with the young generation of Bulgarian animators leads to changes in the styles and thought here.