As expected, DreamWorks Animation made an early splash at the Cannes Film Festival on Wednesday with a big press event for its holiday season feature Rise of the Guardians. Studio head Jeffrey Katzenberg has made a habit of launching his big animated titles (Shrek, Bee Movie, Kung Fu Panda, Puss in Boots, etc) at the European festival and market for the past few years. Later this week, he will also screen DreamWorks’ big summer movie Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted.
Accompanied by Guardians’ director Peter Ramsey, and the film’s voice talent Alec Baldwin, Chris Pine and Isla Fiser (Mrs. Sasha Baron Cohen who is also stealing the limelight in Cannes for his new movie The Dictator), Katzenberg screened 25 minutes of the movie to the audience. A Q & A with the cast and director followed the screening.
Based on a series of books by Oscar-winning producer and author William Joyce, Rise of the Guardians centers on a team of childhood heroes—which includes Santa Claus (Baldwin), the Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), The Sandman, Tooth Fairy (Fisher)—who band together to save the world from the Boogey Man (Jude Law).
Deadline reports that Baldwin dubbed the movie “the Justice League of childhood” and told the crowd the movie showcases the most beautiful animation he has seen in a movie. Credit was also given to the film’s brilliant exec producer William Joyce and Guillermo del Toro, as well as producer Christina Steinberg (Bee Movie, National Treasure). When Baldwin was asked which Guardian has most influenced his life, he joked that it was Marty Singer, his entertainment litigator.
Here is the trailer for the movie, which opens in November: