Pixar's 3D animated "Up" will open the 62nd Festival de Cannes on May 13, 2009, event organizers announced today.
The first animated film, in 3D, to open Cannes, "Up" was described by festival organizers today as, "A comedy adventure in which 78-year-old Carl Fredricksen fulfils his dream of a great adventure when he ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies away to the wilds of South America, only to discover that he has brought with him his biggest nightmare, a 9-year-old Wilderness Explorer stowaway." Pixar parent Disney will open the film in the U.S. on May 29th and in France on July 29th.
Director of Pixar's "Monsters, Inc," Pete Doctor developed the story and characters for the company's "Toy Story" and was a storyboard artists for "A Bug's Life." His co-director on "Up" is Bob Peterson, the writer and author of "Finding Nemo."
More than sixty years ago, Disney's "Dumbo" was the first animated film to screen in Cannes' Official Selection, in 1947. It would take years before the fest would show another animated movie, with "The Fantastic Planet" in 1973 and "Fritz The Cat" in 1974. Recent animated work made an occasional return to Cannes during this decade with "Shrek" (2001), "The Triplets of Belleville" (2003), "Shrek 2" (2004), "Over The Hedge" (2006), "Kung Fu Panda" (2008) and then "Waltz With Bashir" in competition last year.
This year's Festival de Cannes, with French actress Isabelle Huppert as head as President of the Jury, runs through Sunday May 24th, 2009.