The American edition of the Short Shorts Film Festival was established in 1999, and it wasn’t until five years later that Japan joined the festival family by creating the Short Shorts Film Festival&Asia. The organizers of these two events place a great emphasis on promoting short films. The programs of both festivals feature an incredibly diverse range of productions from many parts of the world.
One of the films that could be seen during the Asian edition of the festival was The Bridge by Izumi Yoshida. The film captivated the jury, who awarded it the main prize for best animated short.
The Bridge is a touching story about the “Siberian Children”. The film has been inspired by historical events narrating the early diplomatic relations between Poland and Japan. The main character, who is the leader of Polish children orphaned in Siberia, feels responsible for the group. Having to act like an adult, he can no longer be a helpless child. Every day in the vast, cold, misty, terrifying land is a struggle for survival and overcoming hunger, sorrow, despair, longing for parents, home, and love. One day, unknown rescuers from the Japanese Red Cross come to their aid, appearing like giants in the children’s eyes.
More information about the festival can be found here.