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The Ottawa International Animation Festival is North America’s oldest and largest animation festival, featuring the world’s most quirky, provocative and inspiring animation.

Learn more about the 2021 poster by Amanda Bonaiuto + Angela Stempel.

2021 submission info below

2021 Entries Now Open!

Our new submission system is now ready for you! Head over to Eventival to create a login, if you don’t already have one, and click on the ‘Enter Submissions’ button to learn more about the 2021 competition and to enter your film. 

If you have any questions, please email us.


What You Need to Know

  • Deadline for entry forms and screener URLs:
    May 31st, 2021
  • Only animated films that were completed
    after May 29th, 2020 are eligible.
  • There is no entry or registration fee.
  • You must submit your film through the official Entry Form on the OIAF Eventival Visitor Page. No other method will be accepted.
  • Once you've clicked "Submit" on the form, you won't be able to edit it. You can click "Save Changes" if you need to come back and finish filling out your form later.
  • Films may only be submitted to one category. More information about the categories in OIAF's Official Competition can be found here.
  • Your film must be submitted as a streamable online screener link. The link must remain accessible until the end of July. Films submitted as files, downloads, or dead links will be disqualified.
  • Entries must include at least 1 still from the film (72 dpi, jpg or png).
  • If your film has dialogue that is not in English and is not subtitled, you must include an English dialogue script.

2021 Competition Categories

When submitting your film, choose the category that best describes your film's production environment, distribution method and/or purpose:

Feature Film Competition

Animated Feature: An animated film over 45 minutes in length.

Independent Short Film Competition

Short-format, non-commissioned animated films or videos. Suggested maximum length of 30 minutes.

Student Animation Competition

Films made by students who are either currently enrolled in a high school, post-secondary or graduate diploma or degree or were so enrolled during the films’ production.

Commissioned Films Competition

Works that are funded and produced for specific commercial or promotional purposes.


Including but not limited to commercials, title sequences, station/program identification spots, music videos, and trailers.

Animation Made for Young Audiences Competition

Independent or commissioned films that are produced and distributed specifically for young audiences aged 0-12. Please note only one episode per series is eligible and is limited to 22 minutes and under.

PRESCHOOL: Any non-feature animated film (under 30 minutes) that is aimed specifically at young audiences aged 0-5. 

AGES 6-12: Any non-feature animated film (under 30 minutes) that is aimed specifically at young audiences aged 6-12.

Virtual Reality (VR) Competition

Immersive works that are created for the Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, HTC Vive/Vive Pro, or Samsung Gear VR virtual reality platforms.

IMMERSIVE WORKS: Independent and commissioned projects including but not limited to narrative short experiences, installations, time-based works, interactive works, and non-linear narrative or non-narrative experiences. If applicable, please note only one episode in any series is eligible and all submissions are limited to an experience length of 20 minutes and under.

Animated Series Competition

Works that are creates as part of an animated series for television, streaming, or the web and are not intended for children. Please note only one episode per series is eligible and is limited to 22 minutes or less.


2021 Poster

Statement from the Artists

Animation festivals are all about inspiration, conversation and catching up with new and old friendships. They're an opportunity for our bodies to finally detach from the nest we call our "work stations" where we can dance and come together in celebration of everyone's films. We revel in the creativity of our animation community. It's our support system and creative lifeline always, but especially in these bizarre times.

For both of us, OIAF was the first festival where we experienced that international community, back in 2009, over a decade ago! It was just magic. (Pardon our nostalgic lenses of whimsy, we've been trapped in our rooms for days and are almost certainly dehydrated). Our poster is a literal reflection of that joy, and the creative loop of collaboration that comes from it. To design it, we each brought our characters and our worlds to the page, drawing and sharing our work back and forth until it was finished. This poster was created as an ode to friendship and community.

Amanda + Angela

Angela Stempel is a Venezuelan-American artist, animator and film director, born in California and raised in Caracas. Her work is inspired by obsessive people watching, adventurous color palettes and the tantalizing possibilities of abstraction. Her narrative and experimental animated films have been presented at several international film festivals including Animafest Zagreb, Ottawa International Animation Festival, Pictoplasma Berlin, among others. She lives in Pasadena, CA with her pet fruit trees.


Amanda Bonaiuto is a freelance animation director, artist, and educator currently living and working in New York. She is best known for her short films and commissioned pieces which have screened at film festivals and galleries worldwide. She's inspired by humor, tilted realities, and observing the natural world. She received a BFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in 2012 and an MFA in Experimental Animation from the California Institute of the Arts in 2018. She is currently part time faculty at The New School and makes films and commissions in her studio.

The Ottawa International
Animation Festival

Sept 22 - Oct 3, 2021

This year’s festival will be here sooner than you think. Submissions for this year’s festival are being accepted between March 15 and May 31st. Check back here for speaker, workshop, and panel announcements — they’re just around the corner. If you have any questions for us, let us know.

Want to receive updates as we have them ready?

Thanks to our 2020 Sponsors!

Want to support us in 2021? Email our Development Manager, Stephanie Berrington

Our festival in their words

"Very impressive! All of the industry panels and talks I attended were so informative, kudos to the team that booked that programming. I have been unable to attend OIAF for the past few years because of work and expenses so it was so nice to have the virtual option more in my budget and with so much on demand content."




"I think OIAF is the best event of its kind in the industry. Always fiercely independent, it presents the only true cross section of what's happening in the animation world."



J.J. Sedelmaier Productions

"OIAF is consistently the festival that gathers the best mix of independent and commercial animators, encouraging us to cross-pollinate in the most inspiring, productive, and fun ways possible."




Copyright © 2021, Ottawa Animation Festival | Sept 22-26, 2021