Above: Mark Osborne and James Franco are interviewed about ‘The Little Prince’ on NBC’s ‘Today’ show.
Last week, director and CalArts alumnus Mark Osborne (Film/Video BFA 92) appeared on NBC’s Today show to talk about his latest film, The Little Prince, based on the popular 1943 novella by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
Released by Netflix on Aug. 5, the film combines CG and stop-motion animation to present the classic story within a new modern framework. The voice cast includes Jeff Bridges, Mackenzie Foy, Rachel McAdams, Paul Rudd, Marion Cotillard, Ricky Gervais and CalArts’ adjunct faculty member James Franco, who joined Osborne for the Today interview. Both Osborne and Franco mention CalArts in the video clip posted above
In a feature story on the film, The Independent newspaper touches on the connection between Osborne and The Little Prince:
Director Mark Osborne first read The Little Prince at college after being given it by his wife, with whom he was in a long distance relationship at the time. The special personal meaning it holds for him meant he strived to “protect” the story by creating another, original take around it, based on the impact it has on a little girl. This proves a smart move, introducing us to The Little Prince’s world through the eyes of a child while preserving the beauty of Saint-Exupéry’s evocative original and preventing it from being spread too thinly through expansion for film. The author’s much-loved illustration features as an unexpected delight while Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer is behind the magical score, taking his cue from the familiar, handmade feel of The Little Prince’s tale and enlisting the melodious voice of French singer-songwriter Camille.
The classic story of an aviator who crashes his plane in the Sahara and encounters a boy from an asteroid is ostensibly considered a children’s work because of its colorful watercolor illustrations, but its commentary on loneliness, love, friendship and human nature resonates with adults, as well.
The Little Prince is playing in select theaters and is also now streaming on Netflix.