Rio Flying into US Theaters this WeekendApr 15th, 2011 | By Roy Rasmussen | Category: Art and Entertainment
The animated parrot comedy Rio opens on 3,286 screens in the US Friday, after already grossing $55 million abroad following its premiere in Rio de Janeiro. The film is expected to challenge animated rabbit comedy Hop for box office supremacy this weekend.
Rio tells the story of a baby Spix’s Macaw from Brazil who cannot fly. After being kidnapped by smugglers and taken to Minnesota, the macaw is found by a girl named Linda, who names him “Blu.” Blu never learns to fly in captivity. But then a scientist informs Linda that Blu is the last male of his species, and he must return to Brazil to mate with a female to preserve his kind. Blu falls for a female macaw named Jewel. When he and Jewel are captured by smugglers, Blu must learn to fly in order to save her.
Blu is played by Jesse Eisenberg, who received a Best Actor nomination for his role in The Social Network. Jewel is played by Anne Hathaway of Princess Diaries, soon to play Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises. Comedian Leslie Mann plays Linda. Comedian George Lopez plays Rafael, a toucan who tries to teach Blu to fly.
Rio is directed by Brazilian director Carlos Saldanha. Saldanha is best known for his work on Fox’s animated Ice Age series, which has grossed nearly $2 billion globally. He is currently working on a Fox adaptation of the classic children’s book The Story of Ferdinand.
Rio cost $90 million to produce. Blue Sky Studios, which produced the Ice Age series, is producing the film. 20th Century Fox is handling distribution.