Neon Debuts Teaser for Sad and Lovely Spanish Feature Film "Robot Dreams" in the U.S.

Indie film distributor Neon has released the first teaser for "Robot Dreams," a wistful and lovely hand-drawn Spanish animation based on the graphic novel by Sarah Vallon and directed and written by Pablo Berger, in the United States. The dialogue-free film is Berger's first animated feature, but he is widely known for his live-action work, especially his 2012 singular adaptation of "Snow White," "Blancanieves."

The teaser states that the film is "coming soon," but no release date has been announced. The official synopsis from the distributor reads:

Dog lives in Manhattan and is tired of being alone. One day, he decides to build a robot for himself, and to the rhythm of New York in the 80's, a friendship develops between the two that soon becomes inseparable. One summer night, Dog sadly leaves his robot on the beach, and the $6 million film, which opened in Spain last month to critical acclaim, grossed just over $200,000 in its home country after a month of screenings. The film is not an easy sell. When I first saw footage of "Robot Dreams" last year, I immediately assumed from the production design that it was a children's film. As it turns out, however, the film is not a children's film, but one that can be enjoyed well by younger audiences. The rich, multi-layered story speaks to us on many levels, making it not only one of my favorite films of 2023, but also, along with Miyazaki's "The Boy and the Hare," one of the most emotionally rich animated films of the year.

In an interview with Cartoon Brew last month, director Pablo Berger talked about how people have received the film: "For us, this film was never a children's film. Sarah's book was not for children either. Of course, children will enjoy the film because it is designed and colored for children, but we never thought of adding anything or omitting anything for children. For me, the most important audience for any film is myself. It may sound selfish and self-centered, but I make every film with myself as the primary target, and the team I work with is behind me."

"Neon" is not getting much of a push in this season's Best Feature Film awards, which is somewhat puzzling since it is an incredibly strong contender. Not to mention that Neon's previous film, "Flee," was nominated for three Academy Awards. It won the Contrechamp competition in Annecy, won the Special Jury Prize at Animation is Film, and won the Audience Award at the Bucheon. Last month, it won Best Animated Feature Film at the 2023 European Film Awards and is currently nominated for four Goya Awards in Spain.

Neon also released the film's poster today: