The eighth China International Animation & Cartoon Festival (CICAF) began on Saturday evening in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province.
Mascots of the animation festival.
Companies from 61 countries and regions, including Japanese anime maker Toei and "Angry Birds" developer Rovio Entertainment, will attend the festival, the biggest animation event in China.
The six-day carnival will feature a range of exhibitions, forums, contests and fan-led activities. Its cosplay competition will feature overseas zones this year to attract foreign fans, organizers said.
Saturday's opening ceremony was attended by Liu Yandong, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and a state councilor, who was there to inaugurate the event.
Initiated in 2005 by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television and Zhejiang's provincial government, the festival has been held in Hangzhou for six consecutive years.
Between 2005 and 2011, the festival recorded nearly 6 million visits and a total business transaction volume of 46 billion yuan (7.3 billion U.S. dollars).