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Bruno Bozzetto receives Honorary Award at ITFS Stuttgart

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He is one of the great animation artists of the last decades, his figure “Signor Rossi” belongs to the cultural heritage and has inspired a whole generation: The honorary “trickstar”-Award of Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film was given to the Italian animation artist and legend Bruno Bozzetto.

As part of the award ceremony on May 7th, American animator and cartoonist Bill Plympton, in appreciation of Bozzetto’s work and social commitment, said: “Bruno Bozzetto has influenced the European identity like few others. (…) His critical and, at the same time, affectionate observations of everyday life in the Signor Rossi TV series, are an expression of European diversity and universality.” But he does not just look back: the 79-year old master is still very active and realized numerous flash animations successfully run on festivals and on YouTube. “His satirical short film Europe vs Italy alone has delighted more than 1.6 million viewers since its release in 2012″ admits Plympton.

And Bruno Bozzetto? He added charmingly with a smile after the award ceremony: “I wanted to say I’m not finished yet. Even if such a price could mean that.”

Born in Milano in 1938, Bruno Bozzetto is widely regarded as Italy’s leading animator. In 1958 he had significant success with Tapum! La storia delle armi and soon after established his company Bruno Bozzetto Film. In 1960, with Un Oscar per il Signor Rossi, he gave birth to the distinctive little man with the red hat who would become the Bozzetto trademark and which is nowadays among the animation classics. In 1976, together with actor and animator Maurizio Nichetti, Bruno Bozzetto made Allegro Non Troppo, which mixed live action and animation to illustrate six pieces of classical music including Maurice Ravel’s Bolero, Jean Sibelius’s Valse Triste and Antonio Vivaldi’s Concerto in C Major.  The film can be considered a parody of Walt Disney’s Fantasia, but unlike the Disney classic, Allegro Non Troppo does not attempt to visualize the music in the drawings, but develops its own themes, using the music as a deluxe accompaniment.

Bruno Bozzetto has been awarded many prizes, among them the Golden Bear for Mister Tao at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1990 and the Oscar nomination for Grasshoppers in 1991 as well as the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Animafest Zagreb in 1998.

His humour is rooted in American comedy, but with a soft rhythm and a great taste for surrealism merged with ethical themes and a  lucid pessimism for the human race. Each of his films is characterized by Bruno Bozzetto’s unique sense for combining rhythms and colours with action, comic timing and original fantasy.

Visit the official site of Bruno Bozzetto at bozzetto.com

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