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Wes Anderson’s ‘Isle of Dogs’ to Open 2018 Berlin Film Festival

The world premiere of Wes Anderson’s animated “Isle of Dogs” will open the 2018 Berlin Film Festival, the first animated movie to do so in Berlinale history.

It will be whimsical auteur Anderson’s fourth film in competition at the Berlinale, following “The Royal Tenenbaums” (2002), “The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou” (2005), and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” (2014).  “The Grand Budapest Hotel” also opened the Berlin Film Festival and won the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize.

“I’m most delighted that Wes Anderson will kick off the Berlinale competition again,” festival director Dieter Kosslick said Monday. “‘Isle of Dogs’ will be the first animated film to open the festival, a film that will capture audiences’ hearts with its Wes Anderson charm.”

“Isle of Dogs” is scheduled for release in U.S. cinemas March 23, 2018. Internationally, the film will open in cinemas from April 2018.

Fox Searchlight is distributing the film, which is produced by Indian Paintbrush and which, like Anderson’s 2009 “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” is stop-motion. Set in Japan in the near future, it tells the story of Atari Kobayashi, the 12-year-old ward of corrupt Mayor Kobayashi. When all the pet dogs of Megasaki City are exiled to a vast garbage dump, Atari sets off by himself to Trash Island in search of his canine bodyguard, Spots.

The all-star voice lineup boasts Bryan Cranston, Koyu Rankin, Edward Norton, Liev Schreiber, Bill Murray, Bob Balaban, Jeff Goldblum, Scarlett Johansson, Kunichi Nomura, Tilda Swinton, Ken Watanabe, Akira Ito, Greta Gerwig, Akira Takayama, Frances McDormand, F. Murray Abraham, Courtney B. Vance, Yojiro Noda, Fisher Stevens, Mari Natsuki, Nijiro Murakami, Yoko Ono, Harvey Keitel and Frank Wood.

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