Pixar Animation Studios’ upcoming film Coco has been making news ever since it was announced. After catching flak for trying to copyright their original title for the film (“Día de Muertos”), an early sign that this might become a gringo-ized version of a beloved Mexican cultural touchstone, the Finding Nemo studio has worked to ensure that the finished film is not lacking in the authenticity department. They brought on Chicano illustrator Lalo Alcaraz as a cultural consultant. Director Lee Unkrich (Toy Story 3) was soon joined by Cali-born co-director Adrian Molina. And then its production team assembled an A-list cast that reads like a who’s who of Latino Hollywood royalty—Gael García Bernal, Edward James Olmos, Jamie Camil and Gabriel Iglesias all in one film.
Now, months before it’s set to premiere around the world, the Coco filmmakers have announced that the film will open the Festival Internacional de Cine de Morelia (FICM) on October 20, 2017. In a taped video sharing the news, Molina explained that since Coco was set in Mexico, they’d had a chance to visit the beautiful city of Morelia as part of their research. It’s there that they saw firsthand the elaborate Día de Muertos celebration that plays backdrop to the story of Miguel, a young boy who dreams of being a great musician. So what better way to give back to Morelia and to support FICM’s commitment to building a global filmmaking community than to bring Miguel and company along for the ride?
— Disney•Pixar Coco Mx (@PixarCocoMx) July 5, 2017
Coco‘s premiere at the fifteenth edition of FICM will mark the first time an animated project will open the famed Mexican fest. But in an even rarer and more welcome move, the colorful Disney-Pixar flick will be opening all over Mexico the following week. That means audiences there will get to watch the film an entire month before the rest of the world. So don’t mind us, we’re just booking our tickets to Morelia as we type. Check out the full announcement below.
Coco opens in U.S. theaters on November 22, 2017.