Pixar’s ‘Elemental’ to Close Out 76th Cannes Film Festival

Pixar Animation Studios has announced that Elemental, their 27th feature film, will close out the 76th Cannes Film Festival on May 27, 2023. Elemental will be the fourth Pixar film to close the festival, after Up, Inside Out, and Soul.

For that keeping score, those three films won Academy Awards for Best Feature Film, which means that the studio has early confidence that Peter Sohn’s latest flick could be big for them.

Pete Docter, Pixar’s chief creative officer, said this year’s return to Cannes is particularly special for the studio. “As we all emerge from our pandemic cocoons and come together in story rooms, animation dailies and impromptu brainstorming sessions, it’s a joy and honor to have Pixar back on La Croisette,” said Docter. “Directed by the extraordinary storyteller Peter Sohn, ‘Elemental’ is so funny, full of heart and, frankly, stunning to see. It was created for audiences to experience on the big screen and I love that it’ll make its world premiere at Cannes.”

During an early preview of the footage, director Peter Sohn said the film was a personal story that honored his immigrant parents’ sacrifice while honoring what makes opposites attract. So to tell that story about culture clash, Sohn looked to his own experiences marrying someone who wasn’t Korean after his grandma’s dying words were: “Marry Korean.” He would then turn his personal stories of growing up with immigrant parents, his love of the elements, and his marriage into the basis of Elemental, where a fiery Ember (Leah Lewis) and a go-with-the-flow Wade (Mamoudou Athie) learn that they have much more in common than they originally thought.

“Once that became our North star, we could adjust the characters and the obstacles that they go through,” Sohn said. “So with these three key inspirations and our guiding light of opposites attracting, the story start to come together.”

And to celebrate the announcement, Pixar released this image of Ember and Wade dressed to the nines as they relax on cabana chairs.

Pixar’s Elemental officially opens in theaters on June 16, 2023.

Here’s the official plot synopsis for Elemental:

Disney and Pixar’s “Elemental” is an all-new, original feature film set in Element City, where fire-, water-, land- and air-residents live together. The story introduces Ember, a tough, quick-witted and fiery young woman, whose friendship with a fun, sappy, go-with-the-flow guy named Wade challenges her beliefs about the world they live in.