The Black Pharaoh, the Savage and the Princess, the latest animated movie by French master Michel Ocelot (Kirikou and the Sorceress, Azur and Asmar, Dilili in Paris) will premiere in French theaters in October, Variety reports. French distributor Playtime has already sold the movie in Italy, Canada, Yugoslavia and Portugal and is in talks with buyers for other territories around the world.
The 2D-animated and highly stylized movie, which was made for about 3.7 million euros, was unveiled at the Annecy Festival last week, where the acclaimed auteur received the Honorary Cristal Award for his influential and impressive contributions to the world of art and animation.
Produced by Nord-Ouest Films and co-produced by Studio O and Artemis Productions, the upcoming movie is made up of three separate stories set in different countries and time periods. As the official synopsis reads, “Three tales, three ages, three worlds. At the time of Ancient Egypt, a young king becomes the first black pharaoh to deserve the hand of his loved one. During the French Middle Ages, a mysterious wild boy steals from the rich to give to the poor. In the 18th century Turkey, a prince of pastries and a princess of roses escape the palace to live their love.”
Ocelot is also working on Making Europe Through Fairy Tales, a collection of shorts from all over Europe. The stories will be written and directed by different animation directors in each country, but they will have no connection to each other and presented in a theatrical format.
The work of the 78-year-old writer/director/artist has won numerous awards at Annecy in previous years. His films and TV series have also won several Cesars and BAFTAS and he was made a chevalier of the Legion of Honor in 2009. He also received the Lifetime Achievement Award at Animafest Zagreb in 2015. In a 2008 interview, the director mentioned that he has been influenced by the letters of Voltaire, Father and Daughter, Grand Illusion, Neighbors, the Eiffel Tower, Millesgarden, Persian miniatures, Jean Giraud’s drawings and Kay Nielsen’s illustrations in his work.