Chomet tackles Tati script

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The French director follows monster hit 'Belleville Rendez-Vous' with a lost gem of a story courtesy of Jacques Tati.

While major animation studios are sticking to their three-dimensional guns, Oscar-nominated Sylvain Chomet (‘Belleville Rendez-Vous’) is generating some flat-contoured magic in his Django Films ‘factory’ based in Edinburgh. Salvaging the late director/comedian Jacques Tati's script from an eternity on the shelf, he's chosen to make ‘The Illusionist’, a tale about a magician (a 2D version of Tati himself) and a Scottish girl enchanted by the phantasmagoria that emerges from his hat.

Penned in 1956, the script originally adopted the format of a letter and was addressed to Tati's eldest, estranged daughter. The French master of graceful slapstick apparently ‘wanted to move from purely visual comedy and try an emotionally deeper story,’ Chomet told The Times. If anyone can twist comedy on its head it's Chomet – whose pitch black-humoured ‘The Old Lady and the Pigeons’ bagged him a BAFTA for best animated short film back in 1997.

The animated film will be gracing our screens in 2009.

Author: Eleni Stefanou



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