Ratatouille infests cinemas, nibbles on tasty tie-ins

Friday, 3rd August 2007 at 08:36

ImageSo we're pretty much agreed that people don't go to Disneyland to look at advertising. But we shouldn't give movie tie-ins a bad name -- some of them can turn out pretty tasty. Pixar's latest triumph Ratatouille is right now infesting cinemas in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Austria, leaving a trail of advertising for Disneyland Resort Paris and a couple of special free screenings for Shareholders and AP Dream holders.,

Since around the release of Chicken Little in 2005, Disneyland Resort Paris finally got back into some good cross-promotion with Disney’s movie releases. No doubt many fans’ earliest memories of “EuroDisney” come from the countless advertisements placed before films on Disney’s VHS releases of the early ’90s, and now a whole new generation is discovering the resort at its 15th Anniversary with Pixar’s latest smash-hit CGI tale.

Ratatouille is, according to Disney, “the best reviewed film of the Summer”. That’s not just marketing talk – on reviews database Rotten Tomatoes, it currently counts 158 positive reviews against just 6 negative, giving an overall score of 96% fresh and right up there with the best of Pixar’s greats.

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“The characters are irresistible, the animation is astonishing and the film, a fantasy version of a foodie rhapsody, sustains a level of joyous invention that hasn’t been seen in family entertainment since The Incredibles,” says the Wall Street Journal.

“In this Michelin-starred confection, Brad Bird deserves an Oscar,” raves The Observer. Luckily for Disney (and the $ 7.4 billion hole in their pocket), it appears the studio may never make a bad film.

We know the two lead characters – Rémy and Émile – have been frequenting Toon Studio since late June, and now Disneyland Resort Paris have cooked up some promotion to make the most of the characters — afterall, where else on this continent can you meet the Pixar stars? No doubt the film’s location of a glowing, saccharine Paris will also play well to draw more eyes to the Disneyland just a few miles East…

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On the official website, you can now find a special page with a surprising amount of photos (something Crush’s Coaster and Cars Race Rally still lack) showing the furry pair of rats in front of their new photo location in Toon Studio. Of the international websites for the Ratatouille movie itself, the Dutch and English versions provide partner links to this page on Disneylandparis.com, as has been the case for recent releases such as Cars. The Dutch link, however, is unfortunately presenting a page error. Still, it’s an effort.

The characters themselves, despite being completely Pixar-produced, are 100% Disney. This is actually the first time Pixar have produced furry, hugable animal characters, and no doubt these two will be around for years to come…

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What other treats, beyond a hug from Rémy and Émile? Well, if you’re a Shareholder or an Annual Passport Dream holder, you’re invited to a special, free screening of the film in Walt Disney Studios Park‘s CinéMagique theatre!

As has become the norm for every big animated Disney release, the park’s Disney Studio 2 will opens its doors after-hours for a private screening of the new film. The Annual Passport Dream showing takes place on 25th August 2007, though no doubt this will come as news to almost every passholder unless they’ve stopped by the Bureau Passeport Annuel recently and spotted the form. Apparently you’re not alone if you never received any notification via email or through the post.

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Registration closes on 6th August, so if you’d like to fill one of the limited spaces available for the single screening (the theatre’s capacity is 1,100), you’d better… well, we’re not sure. They don’t seem to want anyone to go. The only spotting of the registration form is thanks to a member on Disney Central Plaza.

More successful, as always, is the Shareholders Club. Here you’ll find a proper online sign-up (click here) ready and waiting for your membership details and seat reservation for one of two screenings — Saturday 8th September 2007 or Sunday 9th September 2007, both beginning at 7pm. However, unlike several film screenings in the past, Ratatouille will be presented exclusively in French.

“We invite you to improve your French thanks to a screening in French version only (without any subtitles),” they boast. Well then, throw away your phrasebook!

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Ratatouille is now showing in cinemas across France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Austria since today. After a little time to mature, the fine French delicacy à la Pixar will arrive in Germany on 3rd October and the UK on 12th October.

Images © Disney/Pixar; by Photos Magiques and by Minnie Mouse on DCP.

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