, the sequel to the 2011 bird-centric blast of Brazilian sunshine from 20th Century Fox’s animation house Blue Sky, adds Broadway superstar Kristin Chenoweth
and singer Bruno Mars
to its voice cast list.
, who earned her second Academy Awards nomination, will reprise her role for Rio 2, along with most of her co-stars including Jesse Eisenberg, Jemaine Clement, will.i.am, Tracy Morgan
, and George Lopez,
all as the Brazilian birds.
Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro, Bebel Gilberto, Jake T. Austin
, and Jamie Foxx
are also set to return, joined by two new cast members as well, including Andy Garcia
and Grammy-winner Janelle Monáe
who will provide original music for the film and also voice a character.
Rita Moreno, Rachel Crow, Pierce Gagnon, Natalie Morales
, and Amandla Stenberg
(Rue from The Hunger Games) are among the other cast additions.
director Carlos Saldanha
(Ice Age) will return to helm the sequel, which will incorporate into its narrative the 2014 FIFA World Cup, set to be hosted by Rio next year.
Rio 2 opens April 14th, 2014.
Rio 2 will follow Blu (Eisenberg), a neurotic blue macaw, and Jewell (Hathaway), his free-spirited mate, as well as their three kids. The conflict of the film arises when Jewel expresses her desire to raise the chicks in the Amazon as ‘real birds’ rather than in their current domesticated environment.