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'Monsters University' to open Shanghai International Film Festival

By Rebecca Keegan

12:52 PM EDT, June 5, 2013

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"Monsters University" will open the Shanghai International Film Festival on June 15, Disney/Pixar and festival organizers jointly announced Wednesday in Shanghai.

The Pixar Animation film, a prequel to 2001's "Monsters Inc.," will be the first animated movie to open the festival, now in its 16th year.

Directed by Dan Scanlon and produced by Kori Rae, "Monsters University" places the lead characters from the original film, one-eyed green orb Mike (voiced by Billy Crystal) and fluffy blue giant Sulley (John Goodman), on a college campus. The movie opens in the U.S. on June 21.

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In addition to "Monsters University," Walt Disney Studios will screen 16 Pixar short films in Shanghai, including "Partly Cloudy," "La Luna," "Luxo Jr." and its newest short, "The Blue Umbrella," as well as last year's Tim Burton stop-motion animated feature "Frankenweenie" and the 3-D rerelease of the feature "Finding Nemo."

Disney is in the midst of increasing its presence in China: The Disney/Marvel film "Iron Man 3" shot footage specifically for Chinese audiences, and the superhero movie is on its way to grossing $130 million in the country. The company is also building its sixth Disneyland in Shanghai, with completion expected in 2016.

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