Lovers of fairy tales and animation take note, The New York International Children's Film Festival will be screening the North American premiere of the newest film from renowned animator Michel Ocelot (Kirikou and the Sorceress, Azur & Asmar), Tales of The Night, on October 15th and 16th at NYC's IFC Film center.
The film marks Ocelot's first foray into 3D animation, with black silhouetted characters set off against exquisitely detailed Day-Glo backgrounds as viewers are whisked off to enchanted lands full of dragons, sorcerers, werewolves, and enormous talking bees . See more details below. NOTE: This event is expected to sell out, advance purchase is highly recommended.
NYICFF will also be screening Chocolate Underground, Hamana Takayuk's anime adaptation of Alex Shearer's Bootleg, this weekend.
- In the not-too-distant future, society is run by the Good For You Party, an all-powerful government organization that has outlawed everything sweet and delicious - and most especially chocolate. Gigantic sniffing robots patrol the streets, zeroing in on even the faintest chocolaty scent and sending all sweet-toothed lawbreakers to jail for "re-education" (think Orwell's 1984, but with candy). Unable to resign themselves to a lifetime of bland, healthy foods, teenage best friends Smudger and Huntly decide to take matters into their own hands and create the Chocolate Underground, a secret club where revolutionaries can indulge in their coveted confections.
This tasty, tongue-in-cheek allegory comes to a head when the boys stumble upon an abandoned mine filled with sugar and cocoa beans, leading to a climactic showdown between the free-snacking youth resistance and their corrupt Big-Brother oppressors. Featuring a perfect mix of fast-paced action scenes and montages fueled by a sugar-sweet J-pop soundtrack, Chocolate Underground is a delectable celebration of chocolate freedom, and a film to make even Willy Wonka salivate!
Fri Sep 30 - IFC CENTER - 11:00
Sat Oct 1 - IFC CENTER - 11:00
Sun Oct 2 - IFC CENTER - 11:00
In Related news, NYICFF producers GKIDS has acquired US distribution rights to Chico& Rita, the highly acclaimed new animated feature from Academy Award-winning director Fernando Trueba (Belle Epoque) and renowned illustrator and designer Javier Mariscal.
The film made its world premiere at Telluride Film Festival, was an official selection at Toronto International Film Festival, and has been released to wide acclaim in the UK, France, and Spain. It will be qualifying for the Oscars in the Best Animated Feature category with a Los Angeles qualifying run December 2011, followed by US theatrical release in early 2012. The film will be released by GKIDS under their new Luma Films banner for adult animation.
GKIDS president Eric Beckman said, “Chico& Rita is a stunning, vibrant film, and a testament to the ongoing resurgence of animation as an art-form for adult audiences. This is a passionately sexy love story with a red-hot soundtrack, as well as a shimmering postcard to old Havana and bebop-era New York. With this pickup GKIDS continues to deepen its focus on unique stories and Oscar-caliber animation from some of today's most creative visionaries.”
Oscar-winning director Fernando Trueba and Spain’s most famous and successful designer Javier Mariscal celebrate their passion for the music and culture of Cuba with an epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak. Cuba, 1948. Chico is a young piano player with big dreams. Rita is a beautiful singer with an extraordinary voice. Music and desire unite them, but their journey – in the tradition of the Latin ballad, the bolero – brings heartache and torment, as they chase their dreams and each other from Havana to New York to Paris and Las Vegas. With an original soundtrack by legendary Cuban pianist and five-time Grammy-winning composer Bebo Valdés, Chico& Rita captures a defining moment in the evolution of jazz and history and features music (and animated cameos) by Thelonious Monk, Charlie Parker, Cole Porter, Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Tito Puente, and Chano Pozo.