Claymation film to open Sundance

Mary And Max to get world premiere at festival.

by Amber Wilkinson

Mary And Max
Mary And Max

Claymation Mary And Max has today been announced as the opening night film at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival.

The film, which features the voices of Philip Seymour Hoffman and Toni Collette in the title roles and is narrated by Barry Humphries, is being created by filmmaker Adam Elliot, who won an Academy Award for his short Harvie Krumpet.

The film tells the tale of two unlikely pen pals - Mary, a lonely, eight-year-old girl living in the suburbs of Melbourne, and Max, a 44-year-old, severely obese man living in New York. The story is based on the director's own pen-friendship that has also lasted more than 20 years.

Festival director Geoffrey Gilmore, said: "This portrait of a global friendship between two marvelously dysfunctional people is an exceptionally moving, funny and thought-provoking work.

"Mary and Max is the first film of its kind to open the Festival and we anticipate audiences will embrace Adam Elliot's feature-length directorial debut for its poignant story, exceptional voice talent and technological creativity."

The film is produced by Melanie Coombs, who was also responsible for producing Harvie Krumpet.

Adam said: "By opening night it will have been five years since Melanie and I began working on the film. It has been a whale of a pregnancy and we are so thrilled that the birth will be in Sundance. It is a dream come true to unveil our film in such an honored and nourishing environment."

The entire 2009 Sundance Film Festival program announcement will be made on Wednesday, December 3 and Thursday, December 4 - we'll be bringing you more details then.

Share this with others on...

Bowled over Lyle Kash on creating new narratives and making Death And Bowling

A short dive into Ca' Foscari's competition We look at the short film festival's winners and some of our favourites

'We Lived with Volteo for five years' Monika Kotecka and Karolina Poryzała on their girl power documentary feature The Herd

A Lebanese story Eliane Raheb on showing the filmmaking process and making Miguel’s War

From saving goals to shooting film Icelandic goalie Hannes Þór Halldórsson on his movie debut Cop Secret

More news and features

We're bringing you news, reviews and interviews from the London Film Festival, Manchester's Grimmfest and Newfest

We're looking forward to Sci-Fi London, Abertoir and the London Korean Film Festival.

We've recently covered the New York Film Festival, the Scottish Queer International Film Festival, the San Sebastian Film Festival, the Glasgow Youth Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival and Deauville and Frightfest.

Read our full for more.

Visit our festivals section.


More competitions coming soon.