GKIDS’ “BELLE” TO MAKE ITS WORLD DEBUT IN THE2021 CANNES FILM FESTIVAL PREMIERE SECTION
FEATURE MARKS OSCAR®-NOMINATED DIRECTOR MAMORU HOSODA’S SECOND INVITATION TO CANNES
GKIDS’ latest acquisition BELLE, from acclaimed filmmaker Mamoru Hosoda and his company Studio Chizu, is an Official Selection of the Cannes Film Festival and will make its world debut in the Cannes Premiere section on Thursday, July 15. This marks the Hosoda’s second invitation to Cannes. Mirai made its debut at Director’s Fortnight in 2018 before receiving an Academy Award® nomination for Best Animated Feature. GKIDS will release BELLE theatrically in North America in its original Japanese language and a new English dubbed version this winter and will qualify the film for 2021 awards consideration.
“Following the selection of my previous film ‘Mirai’ for the Directors’ Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival, I am honoured that ‘Belle’ has been selected for the Première section of the Official Selection. It is sporadic for an animated film to be selected for the Festival de Cannes, and I believe that this selection is a sign to the audience of both the significance of this new film and the growing recognition of animated films in the future,” said Hosoda.
Hosoda’s highly anticipated new animated feature, BELLE, is an original story written and helmed by the celebrated director whose previous films include Mirai, The Boy and the Beast, Wolf Children, Summer Wars, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and others. Hosoda is joined by a long-time producing partner and Studio Chizu co-founder Yuichiro Saito, producer on the title.
On BELLE, the Japanese creative team worked in collaboration with a roster of international talents. Character designer Jin Kim, the artist behind several iconic Disney features, including Moana, Tangled, and Frozen, designed the titular Belle.
Cartoon Saloon’s Oscar®-nominated Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart (Wolfwalkers, Song of the Sea, The Secret of Kells) also join the team, contributing artwork for the various virtual fantasy worlds within the film.
In addition, Hosoda continues his film collaborations with architects, and is joined by up-and-coming British architect and designer Eric Wong, who designed the virtual world of “U.” Rounding out the team, composer Ludvig Forssell, best known for his collaborations with video game auteur Hideo Kojima (Death Stranding, Metal Gear Solid V), joined the scoring team for the film.
BELLE is scheduled to be released in theatres in Japan beginning July 16.
From the celebrated Oscar®-nominated director Mamoru Hosoda and Studio Chizu, creator of Mirai, Wolf Children, Summer Wars, and more, comes a fantastical yet beautiful and contemporary thematic story of one girl’s growth in the age of social media.
Suzu is a 17-year-old high school student living in a rural village with her father. For years, she has only been a shadow of herself. Then, one day, she enters “U,” a virtual world of 5 billion members on the Internet. There, she is not Suzu anymore but Belle, a world-famous singer. She soon meets with a mysterious creature. Together, they embark on a journey of adventures, challenges and love, in their quest to become who they indeed are.
GKIDS is the producer and distributor of award-winning feature animation for both adult and family audiences. Since 2010, the company had scored an astounding 12 Best Animated Feature Oscar nominations with The Secret of Kells in 2010, A Cat in Paris and Chico & Ritain 2012, Ernest & Celestine in 2014, The Tale of The Princess Kaguya and Song of the Sea in 2015, Boy and the World and When Marnie Was There in 2016, My Life as a Zucchini in 2017, The Breadwinner in 2018, Mirai in 2019, and Wolfwalkers in 2021.
GKIDS also handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films, one of the world’s most coveted animation collections with Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke and others; as well as the critically acclaimed television series Neon Genesis Evangelion. GKIDS also hosts ANIMATION IS FILM (AIF). This annual LA-based film festival embraces the highest aspirations of animation as a cinematic art form.
It is a vocal advocate for filmmakers who push the boundaries of the medium to its most entire range of artistic expressions. AIF returns to Hollywood this fall, October 22-24. http://www.GKIDS.com