WAGGA is about to get animated with the return of the Australian International Animation Festival this weekend.
In its 16th year, the festival has brought back many fan-favourites while coming up with new experiences that showcase the world of animation.
For the festival's co-director Andrew Hagan, it is his mission to give the audience a "complete, up-to-date snapshot" of all the happenings on the international creative animation scene.
Mr Hagan said the festival has become more of a social-affair this year, rather than a passive experience.
"Anyone can watch a movie from home, but the festival is coming up with new ways to build an atmosphere of creativity and excitement for people to enjoy," he said.
The latest feature of the festival is the virtual reality village, which will open the event on Friday night.
The village offers a 360, virtual experience, which Mr Hagan said was a new way of storytelling.
Another feature is the RENDER program - a two-hour long forum made up of 18 professionals who specialise in animation and creative opportunities.
Mr Hagan described the program as a "rapid TED-talk" where attendees could learn and ask questions from people who are doing extraordinary things in the industry.
"We have a CSU lecturer who has worked on projects such as Happy Feet and the Lego movie, an independent animator who travels back-and-forth to Japan and an professional who received an Emmy nomination for their works," he said.
"The program is a relaxed forum, but with a high-calibre of speakers who can really show what's happening on the international stage."
Mr Hagan said there are events for everyone to enjoy, from hard-core enthusiasts to the curious-minds.
He said the festival has once again picked over 120 films from a range of styles and genres, which will be played across the three-days.
"Animation use to be a rarity in movies, but now you see it everywhere - whether it be completely animated like Pets or Toy Story or supported by visual effects," he said.
"It's not often noticed, but this festival is about recognising the amazing things happening in the industry and it is great to bring it to a regional area."
The Australian International Animation Festival is on between Friday and Sunday at the Forum 6 Cinema.
He said the event details could be found on the festival's website.
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