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Animation festival kicks off in Toronto Friday

David Silverman, director of The Simpsons COURTESY: THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Lisa Poole

The world’s animation gurus will descend on Toronto over the weekend for the second annual Toronto Animation Arts Festival International (TAAFI).

Kicking off the festival will be one of the biggest names in animation: The Simpsons director David Silverman – discussing his work on one of the biggest cartoons of all time in a keynote entitled Me and The Simpsons.

The TV show has been on the air for more than two decades, currently about to begin its 25th season. Silverman has also been nominated for an Academy Award for his work on the movie The Longest Daycare.

Other notable speakers slated to participate at TAAFI:
•    Pixar animator Ben Su
•    Dr. Stuart Sumida, Hollywood’s expert on animal anatomy and locomotion
•    Emmy award winner Kaj Pindal
•    Disney life drawing expert Samantha Youssef, who has been training animation artists from Disney, DreamWorks, Reel FX, BioWare, Ubisoft and many others

In addition to screenings of Canadian and international films, there will also be a tribute to Ray Harryhausen. The visual effects pioneer who died in May at 92.

TAAFI began in 2012, focusing on all things animated: from film to television to video games.

The festival runs from July 26-28 at Corus Quay and the TIFF Bell Lightbox.

For more information – including ticket prices and panel and screening times – click here.

Special to CityNews.ca