Animated short Spring created by Danish director and multidisciplinary artist Pernille Kjaer, and The Garden of Heart directed by animation artist and musician Olivér Hegyi, which received a special award from jury member Aneta Ozorek, both had world premieres in the Short Film Grand Competition. Spring is a cinematic poem about unrequited love and mischievous house spirits, set on the harsh, windswept west coast of Jutland, while the multi-award winning The Garden of Heart portrays a nervous art student-to-be battling his own demons.
The Croatian competition featured three films: puppet animation Remember How I Used to Ride a White Horse created by Ivana Bošnjak Volda and Thomas Johnson Volda, followed by David Lovrić’s phantasmagorical Holy Men that has been successfully touring international festivals, as well as Martina Meštrović’s Her Dress for the Final which had its world premiere at Animafest, where it immediately won a Special Mention. To create the character of an elderly woman who wants to be buried in her wedding dress dyed black, Martina was inspired by her own grandmother, wishing to use the film to break a few stereotypes that grandmothers lead monotonous lives.
The World Panorama screened Trace by Bulgarian animation artist Asparuh Petrov, while a special festival program, CEE Animation Talents, featured the multi-award-winning Cockpera created by Kata Gugić.