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Pixar's 'Up' to open Cannes Film Festival

March 19, 2009 | 10:36 am


Animated movies have become a central component of the Cannes Film Festival, and now Disney and Pixar Animation Studios are joining the party in the French Riviera: Disney and Pixar’s “Up” was named Thursday as the festival’s opening night film.

Having hosted the recent premieres of “Waltz With Bashir,” “Kung Fu Panda” and “The Triplets of Belleville,” the Cannes festival picked the 3-D “Up” to launch the 62nd annual festival on May 13. The animated movie about a 78-year-old man and a 9-year-old Wilderness Explorer (think: Boy Scout) who are transported in a balloon-lifted home to a distant land filled with exotic animals is scheduled to have its American theatrical release on May 29.

It’s Disney’s first film to open the prestigious festival, and the studio said “Up” is also the first 3-D film to launch the international gathering in the south of France. In 2007, Cannes hosted the world premiere of the concert movie “U2 3D,” but it did not open the festival.

--John Horn