The Ottawa International Animation Festival (OIAF) is asking aspiring Canadian animators to Pitch THIS! once again.

The competition gives creators a chance to kickstart an animated series with the support of industry mentors. Participants can submit two original pitches that have the potential to be turned into fully animated series.

This is the fourth year Mercury Filmworks, an Ottawa based production company, is partnering with the OIAF to host the competition.

“Over the last few years, we have seen the quality of projects and the passion for storytelling go from strength to strength,” Heath Kenny, the chief content officer at Mercury Filmworks, said.

“Our belief is that together as a community we can reach higher and go further to create opportunities for Canadian storytellers to be seen on the global stage.”

The 2024 Ottawa International Animation Festival runs from Sept. 25 to 29. [Image © Ottawa International Film Festival]

If selected as one of 10 semi-finalists, participants will have the chance to pitch at the festival’s Animation Conference on Sept. 25 at the National Arts Centre.

The winner will receive $5,000 from Mercury Filmworks, $1,000 in legal services, an annual license to animation software and access to on-demand videos from The Animation Studio valued at $400 and two passes to the OIAF 2025.

The competition is open to Canadians from all backgrounds and the guidelines have been posted on the OIAF’s website.

Last year’s winner was Rebecca “Beccs” Champagne for her series Ghost Stories. Champagne lives in Ottawa and has worked for outlets including Netflix, PBS, Amazon Prime and more.

“So much incredible work has been showcased over the years at Pitch THIS!,” said Kelley Neall, managing director for the OIAF.

The applications are due June 17.