Debuting at the currently ongoing Cannes Film Festival, The Red Turtle is a co-production with Western studios and tells the story of a shipwrecked man. It also has no dialogue.
The film is directed by Academy Award winning animator Michaël Dudok de Wit, for whom The Red Turtle is a return to feature length animation after many decades spent on short films.
The story follows a man lost on an island and his ongoing struggle with a mysterious creature – the titular red turtle – who foils his plans to escape. The art style blends realism with a touch of whimsy, and features shades of Dudok de Wit’s signature charcoal style which he employed to Oscar-winning levels in his 2000 short film Father and Daughter. The Red Turtle was co-written by Dudok de Wit and Pascale Ferran, a César Award-winning director and screenwriter – the French equivalent of the Oscars.
Co-producing the film are The Wild Bunch, the German distributor of Studio Ghibli’s work. The company had previously distributed The Artist and The King’s Speech – both of which were recipients for Best Film at their respective Academy Awards. The other co-production partner is Why Not Productions, a French studio who produced Assault on Precinct 13.
The Red Turtle will receive its full French release in June with a Japanese release to follow in September. No details yet about full international release but it’s not hard to assume that one is definitely coming.
Watch the trailer here: