Founded in 2009

PSHS Animation LAB

Founder / Mentor

Arts Institute of

Palm Springs High School

Board Member


Circa 1994

Studied at CSUS

and Institut de Touraine, France

Backyard Short Film Festival

Palm Springs, CA


Dimitri Halkidis is a photographer from the East Coast who started his career shooting New York Fashion Week during the years of 1990-1992 and MTV's “The Real World ” New York, and Miami Beach seasons. After studying at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, Dimitri moved to the West Coast in the late 80's. Dimitri has photographed the likes of George Clooney, Sarah Jessica Parker, Grace Jones, Jack Nicholson, and Oscar nominee Virginia Madsen to name a few. He worked in Hollywood for 25 years before heading to Palm Springs in 2009. Currently, he is a resident of Palm Springs and he has become a prominent member of the community. Dimitri Halkidis, a recipient of Palm Springs Human Rights Commission Community Service Awards 2016 for his mentoring and educative work in the community. Dimitri is also an artist and gallerist, whose influence is felt all over the Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.

“Art is what binds us together and what prompts us to ask questions of ourselves and of others. As artists, we have the ability to challenge and transform the world and inspire a new way of thinking through various art mediums such as film making,” explains Dimitri Halkidis, founder of Boo2Bullying, the nonprofit organization based in Palm Springs and Los Angeles which seeks to promote understanding, engagement and unity against bullying and intolerance. 

BOO2BULLYING, President & Founder

Providing outreach, mentoring, inspiration, support and hope for our youth and their families.

"Boo2Bullying came to Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences to run an assembly and two days of workshops for our 10th grade Days of Service. They were professional, reliable, and engaged our students in a way that is rarely witnessed! The authenticity of the variety of storytellers, using both humor and depth to convey their life journeys, made a huge impact on our students. Not only were they willing to share but they facilitated thoughtful dialogues during the workshops and gave students the opportunity to speak to their own personal experiences. From the overwhelmingly positive feedback we received from our 10th graders, I would definitely recommend this organization to any educator looking to open the eyes of their students into the world of bullying." 

Hali Morell, Upper School Community Service Chair

Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences

Santa Monica, CA


Brian Neil HoffFEstival Director

PSHS Animation LAB Brian Neil Hoff

"Brian Hoff is a God-send! We at Palm Springs High School were astounded to find such a creative and passionate influence for our students.  Mr. Hoff has given countless hours and shared his enthusiasm with dozens of our students.  Not only has he shared his personal career pathway in animation with several classes of students but he also has served as a mentor working weekly with students interested in the animation industry.  Clearly, Mr. Hoff has excited our young people and helped ignite creative verve that will be a foundation for everything in these young people’s lives."

Richard Kravitz, Guidance Councilor 

Palm Springs High School

Welcome to the 1st Annual Palm Springs International Animation Festival

 This inaugural season we have received over 2000 + unique film entries from 92 countries. Each year our team of jurors work to select 150+ titles from shorts to features that showcase the breadth of the art form. We hold our judging to nine cinematic virtues: storytelling, humor, heart, ideas, originality, visual interest, craftsmanship, diversity, and gut-level viewing pleasure. 

We're proud to be featuring award winning films from Cannes, Annecy, Tribeca and Sundance with Oscar and Grammy artists and producers in a variety of styles from 2D, 3D, Hand Drawn, Water Color, Oil Painted, VFX & Rotoscoping, Experimental, Sand, Anime, and Stop-Motion

The festival experience is about more than just watching film after film. During intermissions, or at the after-parties, strike up a conversation about what you’ve just seen. Review the show with your date, pointing out personal favorites in the program. Ask one of the animators about what went into creating their project. Join the animation tribe, trading tips about local job opportunities. At its heart, the festival is a family reunion for animation-lovers.

Whether you’ve been attending since year one, or whether you’re discovering indie animation for the first time... The magic ingredient that turns films into a festival is you. We’re here together to celebrate creativity of these artists who have worked so hard to transform their daydreams into a fantasy reality and appreciate how much love has been poured into these projects.

Thank you to everyone who has given their support to this colossal undertaking. Thank you to the film jurors, the friends who’ve helped get the word out, and the volunteers who have help promote this exciting event!  Most of all, thank you to the filmmakers. Your films delight and inspire—it is a pleasure to help bring them to a wider audience.

Animation is a powerful form of art with the ability to educate, inform and inspire a new world of storytelling. Our goal and passion is to celebrate amazing animated films, the talented artist and their teams from around the world. 

-Brian Neil Hoff, Festival Director



2017Palm Springs international animation festival