Rio, often promoted as Rio: The Movie, is a 2011 American 3D computer-animated musical comedy film produced by Blue Sky Studios and directed by Carlos Saldanha. The title refers to the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro, where the film is set. The film features the voices of Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, will.i.am, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Tracy Morgan, Jemaine Clement, Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro and Jake T. Austin. It tells the story of Blu (Eisenberg), a male blue macaw who is taken to Rio de Janeiro to mate with a female. He eventually falls in love with Jewel (Hathaway), a free-spirited macaw, and together they have to escape from being smuggled by Nigel (Clement), a cockatoo. The theme song, "Telling the World" was sung by Taio Cruz.
Saldanha developed his first story concept of Rio in 1995, in which a penguin is washed up in Rio. However, Saldanha learned of the production of the films Happy Feet and Surf's Up, and changed the concept to involve macaws and their environments in Rio. He proposed his idea to Chris Wedge in 2006, and the project was set up at Blue Sky. The main voice actors were approached in 2009. During production, the crew visited Rio de Janeiro and also consulted with an expert on macaws at the Bronx Zoo to study their movements.
20th Century Fox released the film on March 22, 2011 in Brazil and April 15, 2011 in the United States. The film received generally positive reviews from film critics. Observers praised the visuals, voice acting, and music. The film was also a box office success, grossing over In Brazil, several types of exotic birds get smuggled to different countries. While driving to Moose Lake, Minnesota, a crate with a male blue macaw hatchling falls into the snow. Linda Gunderson quickly finds the macaw, adopting him as her pet and naming him Blu. However, he is unable to fly, which makes him subject to ridicule by the Canadian Geese that frequent the outside of Linda's bookstore.
One day, ornithologist Túlio Monteiro invites Blu and Linda to vacation in Rio de Janeiro, on the condition that Blu mate with a female macaw before his return to Moose Lake, as he is the last male of his species. Linda takes the offer and the three are flown to Rio, where Blu meets a Red-crested Cardinal named Pedro and his Yellow Canary friend Nico. Blu is taken to Túlio's aviary, and falls in love with Jewel, a fiercely independent blue macaw longing to flee into the wilderness. Blu and Jewel are captured by a boy named Fernando and a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo named Nigel, both of whom work for a group of smugglers led by Marcel. Nigel tells the macaws that he vowed to smuggle exotic birds because of his role being replaced on a television program. Blu and Jewel flee into a jungle.
Fernando meets Linda and Túlio, explaining that Marcel forced him to capture birds, before cooperating with the two to find Blu. The macaws meet a Toco toucan named Rafael, who offers to take them to his bulldog friend Luiz to remove a chain connected to their legs. He also tries to teach Blu how to fly, before the three meet Pedro and Nico. Nigel hires a horde of thieving marmosets led by Mauro to capture Blu and Jewel. Pedro and Nico take Blu and Jewel to a bird's Rio-style party, where they perform a duet, but are attacked by the marmosets. Their bird friends fight them, allowing the five to flee. Linda and Túlio are taken to the smugglers hideout. While there, Marcel explains that he will use the Rio Carnival to capture Blu and Jewel.
Meanwhile, Blu and the others meet Luiz. Luiz releases the chain holding Blu and Jewel using his drool. After a brief falling out, Blu and Jewel decide to go their separate ways. When Blu and Rafael learn from Pedro and Nico that Nigel captured Jewel, the four rush to the carnival to rescue her, while Linda and Túlio organize a rescue attempt on the birds.
While Linda and Túlio pose as dancers (in costumes designed after Spix's Macaws), Marcel enacts his plan, using Nigel to capture the birds. On board Marcel's Short SC.7 Skyvan, the macaws release the captive birds out of the plane, but Nigel crushes Jewel's wing by sending a cage down on her while fighting with Blu. Blu uses a fire extinguisher to send Nigel into the propeller of the plane's engine, and the smugglers flee. Unable to fly, Jewel slips out of the plane and falls towards the ocean. Blu jumps out of the plane to rescue Jewel, and finally discovers that he is able to fly. Later, Linda, Túlio and Fernando organize a sanctuary to protect the jungle from smugglers. Blu and Jewel raise three chicks together and celebrate with their bird friends, Nigel is ridiculed for his loss of feathers, and the smugglers are sent to jail.
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