MOONRISE KINGDOM, the latest film by American director Wes Anderson, will open the Cannes Film Festival later this month. The film, technically Anderson’s first period piece, is set during the 1960s, when a young boy and girl (Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward) run away together and their small New England town is turned upside down looking for them. Set on an island off the coast of New England during the 1960s, this is an oddball coming of age story that includes the director’s most star-studded cast since the cult favorite THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS. The director has seduced the likes of Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton and Harvey Keitel, alongside Anderson regulars Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman. The film will likely rest on the shoulders of its two unknown young leads, who may emerge with bonafide star status after the film makes its Cannes debut and opens in North America on May 27 via Focus Features.
Anderson’s films feature many of the same actors, crew members, and other collaborators. He has worked extensively with the Wilson brothers (Owen, Luke, and Andrew), Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe, Seymour Cassel, Anjelica Huston and Jason Schwartzman. His 1996 indie film BOTTLE ROCKET (adapted from a short finished two years earlier) established him as a filmmaker to watch. The 1998 fresh and funny satire RUSHMORE launched the career of its young lead Jason Schwartzman, as well as giving veteran actor Bill Murray one of his choicest roles. THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS (2001), a quirky family dramedy starring Gene Hackman and an all star cast that included Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Stiller, Bill Murray, Angelica Huston, Owen Wilson and Luke Wilson, solidified the Anderson brand of off kilter satire with an underlying sentimentality. His follow up THE LIFE ACQUATIC WITH STEVE ZISSOU (2006) was a critical and box office disappointment, and the India-set THE DARJEELING LIMITED (with the trio of Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody and Jason Schwartzman) also did not set the box office on fire. He was back in form in 2009 for the stop-motion animation adaptation of the Roald Dahl book FANTASTIC MR. FOX. Now all eyes are turned to Cannes to see if Anderson can replicate his earlier success in the live action medium. For information on the film, visit its website: http://www.moonrisekingdom.com/#home