The Black Pharaoh, the Savage and the Princess, the latest animated film by French master Michel Ocelot (Kirikou and the Sorceress, Azur and Asmar, Dilili in Paris) will premiere in French cinemas in October, diversity reports. French distributor Playtime has already sold the film in Italy, Canada, Yugoslavia and Portugal and is in talks with buyers for other territories around the world.
The 2D animated and highly stylized film, which was produced at around €3.7 million, was launched at the Annecy Festival last week, where the acclaimed auteur filmmaker received the Honorary Crystal 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 film consists of three separate stories set in different countries and time periods. As the official synopsis reads: “Three stories, three ages, three worlds. In ancient Egypt, a young king becomes the first black pharaoh to earn his mistress’ hand. In medieval France, a mysterious wild boy steals the rich to give to the poor. In 18th-century Turkey, a pastry prince and a rose princess flee the palace to pursue their love.”
Ocelot is also working on Make Europe through fairy tales, a collection of short films from all over Europe. The stories will be written and directed by different animation directors in each country, but they will be unconnected and presented in a theatrical format.
The work of the 78-year-old writer/director/artist has received numerous awards in Annecy in recent years. His films and television series have also won multiple Cesar and BAFTAS awards 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 was influenced by Voltaire’s letters, Father and daughter, great illusion, Neighborsthe Eiffel Tower, Millesgarden, Persian miniatures, the drawings of Jean Giraud and the illustrations of Kay Nielsen in his work.