Leap! ( titled Ballerina in France) is a 2016 3D computer animated musical adventure comedy film. The film was directed by Éric Summer and Éric Warin at L’Atelier Animation in Canada. The filmmakers used key frame animation of Aurélie Dupont and Jérémie Bélingard, two-star dancers of the Paris Opera Ballet, to translate realistic dance choreography to the animated film. The film premiered at the Mon premier Festival on October 19, 2016. In May 2016, The Weinstein Company acquired distribution rights to the film in the United States.
As of August 2017, Leap! has grossed over $86.1 million worldwide. Canada, France, and Spain have had the most success of the film. The movie was distributed by Entertainment One in Canada and Gaumont in France. It has a total run time of 89 minutes and a budget of $30 million. Canal+, M6 Films, and SODEC were just a few of the many production companies to make this film a success.
Leap! Stars the talented voices of Elle Fanning, Dane DeHaan, Maddie Ziegler, Carly Rae Jepsen, Mel Brooks and Kate Mckinnon. The story tells a tale of a young girl named Felicie (Elle Fanning), a poor orphan girl who dreams of becoming a ballerina. She runs away from the orphanage with her best friend, Victor (Dane DeHann), a young inventor. They travel to Paris to fulfill their dreams. The real question is, will they face the hardships and challenges to come?
The animation to this film was excellent. I really enjoyed the many dance scenes, the architecture of the buildings and the landscape. I enjoyed the storyline but it seemed rushed and fast paced at some parts. I also enjoyed the development of characters throughout the film. I was curious to know why the name of the main title was changed from Ballerina to Leap! I can understand that they might want to appeal to both boys and girls throughout the film and ballerina could be too vague. The voice casting and music wasn’t terrible but the many historical inaccuracies were a problem. 1) In Paris you only see horses and carriages yet in one scene, there is a gas powered motorcycle chase. 2) The Statue of Liberty is green in the movie and not copper. 3) It takes many years to perfect the art of ballet. 4) The story of Felicie’s mother was kind of rushed throughout the film.
I would recommend this film to anyone but towards the end, the movie gets a little dark. The message of the film is to take chances. Do something extraordinary and pursue your goals. I’ve only seen the United States version but I would also like to see the French version. I have heard from numerous people they have added a lot of American references in the U.S version.
I don’t see this movie winning an Oscar but I can see this film being nominated at the Annie Awards. I give this movie 3 ballet slippers out of 5.