Disney/Pixar new film, UP has been selected to be the opening film at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

It was announced today that “UP” will premiere in Digital 3D as the opening night movie at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, making it the first time ever that either a Disney movie or an animated film have opened the prestigious festival. Opening night takes place on Wednesday, May 13.

After the announcement Disney chairman Dick Cook released the following statement:

“It’s a great honor for The Walt Disney Studios, and our incredibly talented cast members at Pixar Animation Studios, to have ‘UP’ selected as the first animated feature to ever open the Cannes Film Festival. Adding to this historic milestone, ‘UP’ is also the first digital 3D film, and the first Disney film selected for the coveted opening night slot at Cannes. We are so proud of this terrific movie, and can’t wait to share it with the filmmaking community and festival-goers on Wednesday, May 13, and the rest of the world starting on May 29th.”

John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer for Disney and Pixar Animation Studios also released a statement earlier today:

“We are absolutely thrilled that the Cannes Film Festival has chosen ‘UP’ to be its prestigious opening night offering. This is a huge step for animation, and further supports our belief that a great animated film is simply a great film. Pete Docter, the director of ‘UP,’ and the amazing team of artists, animators, technicians, and storytellers at Pixar have worked so hard to create a great motion picture that is impressively fresh, funny, and powerfully emotional.”

Directed by Pete Docter (Monsters Inc.), Up is a comedy adventure about 78-year-old balloon salesman Carl Fredricksen, voiced by Ed Asner, ) fulfilling his lifelong dream of a great adventure when he ties thousands of balloons to his house and flies away to South America. Too late he finds out that little neighbour Russel, a nightmare more than a kid, is in the flying out too. UP opens in both conventional and Digital 3D theaters in the US two weeks after Cannes, on Friday May 29.