Annecy Opener ‘Sirocco and the Kingdom of Air Streams,’ as Seen by Director Benoit Chieux: ‘The Best Way to Respect Children is To Follow My Instincts’ |

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Lille-born filmmaker Benoît Chieux has been coming to Annecy for 30 years. This year, to his ain amazement, he is opening nan show pinch “Sirocco and nan Kingdom of Air Streams.” 

“It’s an unthinkable astonishment and a immense honor. Today’s title [in animation] is very reliable and location are truthful galore high-quality characteristic films retired there,” he says, calling nan arena “an exceptionally rich | spot to meet and observe caller things.”

In “Sirocco,” 2 sisters, Juliette and Carmen, observe a concealed transition to nan world of their favourite book, nan Kingdom of Air Streams. Transformed into cats and separated from each other, they will person to find their measurement backmost and – pinch nan thief of talented vocalist Selma – face nan mysterious Sirocco, nan maestro of winds and storms.

“His look is half-hidden successful bid to tie nan viewer’s attention. In a spectacular movie for illustration this one, it’s important to support immoderate shadows and not show conscionable astir everything. The only measurement to find retired who is down that scarf is to spell and spot nan film!,” he enthuses.

“Sirocco” is produced by Ron Dyens (Sacrebleu Productions), Gregory Zalcman (Take Five) and Cilvy Aupin (Ciel de Paris). Paris-based Kinology handles sales. Chieux co-wrote nan book pinch Alain Gagnol, besides down nan Oscar-nominated feature “A Cat successful Paris.”

“Japanese board successful general, and Hayao Miyazaki successful particular, make afloat usage of nan cinematic language,” says Chieux erstwhile discussing his ain inspirations for nan movie that, it was teased, combines “the tone of Studio Ghibli’s masterpieces and nan visuals of ‘Yellow Submarine.’”

Benoît Chieux astatine work Credit: Sacrebleu Productions – Take Five – Ciel de Paris

“The measurement they spot their cameras and move their characters provides nan spectator pinch a very immersive belief of life. In position of aesthetics, I besides consciousness adjacent to French cartoonists for illustration Moebius, Nicole Claveloux and Claude Ponti.”

Despite its fantastical setting, he sees it arsenic a contemporary tale. 

“The powerful winds that rustle crossed nan kingdom allude to nan ambiance disruption that is transforming our lives,” he says.

“I don’t cognize what ‘real’ intends successful cinema, but what interests maine is ‘the belief of reality.’ Socio-political issues weren’t a portion of this story, but these are nan questions that liking maine for a early project. I want to find ways to convey these topics to children.”

Chieux ne'er forgets astir his smallest viewers, he admits. 

“The champion measurement to respect children is to travel my instincts. I effort to tackle subjects that touch maine personally, but I walk a batch of clip and power connected uncovering nan simplest, clearest ways for them to understand nan communicative I’m telling. And connected [making sure] they will bask looking astatine it.” 

Chieux, who antecedently co-directed “Aunt Hilda!” pinch Jacques-Rémy Girerd, arsenic good arsenic César-nominated short “Midnight’s Garden,” is unfastened to continuing these windswept adventures. 

Sirocco and nan Kingdom of Air Streams Credit: Sacrebleu Productions – Take Five – Ciel de Paris

“I person worked a batch connected this film. I would for illustration to create different universes, but 1 of our challenges had to do pinch creating a reliable world that would look immense, and truthful rather easy to move it into a series. That’s what Ron Dyens wanted arsenic well.” 

He surely wants nan movie to entreaty to a wide audience. 

“Especially to children. Its distributor, Haut et Court, has been supporting ‘Sirocco’ for respective years and it will beryllium released successful French cinemas connected Dec. 13,” he notes. 

“It’s a very bully clip for animation. The assemblage is becoming bigger and animation’s spot successful nan world of cinema is besides increasing each nan time. I don’t deliberation online broadcasting should beryllium a free-for-all, however. Streaming should beryllium legally regulated successful bid to respect nan diverseness of broadcasters, specified arsenic TV channels and movie theaters, which are still very important successful France.”