Tim Burton Designs Balloon For The 2011 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

A lonely outsider will become the star attraction as B., a stitched together balloon boy takes flight in the 85th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. World-renowned filmmaker and artist, Tim Burton brings his unique vision to the lineup of the Macy’s Parade with the introduction of B. to the skies above New York City. Specially designed by Mr. Burton, B. is the latest entry into the famed holiday Parade’s Blue Sky Gallery series, which invites renowned artists to create flying wonders for the Thanksgiving procession.

“I’ve always had a fascination with balloons,” stated Tim Burton. “To have the opportunity to design one for the Macy’s Day Parade is a real honor. Looking through photographs of the balloons that have been part of the parade over the last 85 years was really inspiring.” As for the new balloon, Mr. Burton said, “B. Boy looks forward to his flight through Manhattan on Thanksgiving Day.”

Firmly framed in the artist’s unique aesthetic, B. Boy, like all other inhabitants of the world of Tim Burton has an interesting story.

Born, or more accurately – constructed on the fourth of July in the basement of London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital, B. Boy was stitched together from rejects of old birthday party balloons left over from the many children’s parties that took place on the upper floors of the Hospital. With his pointed teeth and uneven stitches, B. was not allowed to play with the children at the hospital, because some feared he would scare them. With his spirit deflated, B. withdrew to his cramped basement home and into the world of his favorite film, The Red Balloon. Watching it obsessively, B. hoped that one day he too would be able to fly above the city and bring joy to one small child. With the notion that some dreams come with strings attached, B.’s dream will finally come true on Thanksgiving Day as he soars in the famed Macy’s Parade.

B. will join the ranks of five other works of contemporary art that have been transformed into flying wonders. Previous flying art balloons have included works by Tom Otterness, Jeff Koons, Keith Haring and Takashi Murakami. Helping to bring fine art to the masses, Tim Burton’s B. will debut on Thursday, November 24th in front of more than 3.5 million spectators lining the streets of Manhattan and another 50 million viewers nationwide.

Starting with a one-of-a-kind sketch, the artists at Macy’s Parade Studio collaborated with Mr. Burton over the course of the summer on the balloon design, even traveling to England and the film set of Burton’s latest film, Dark Shadows. Armed with a treasure trove of Macy’s historical archive materials, Macy’s creative director Bill Schermerhorn, Macy’s lead designer John Piper and Burton, fine-tuned the concept and design of the new balloon creation. From there B. was transformed from a sketch and 2-foot model, into a 32-foot tall, 19-foot wide inflatable giant.

The 85th Anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade kicks off on Thursday, November 24, 2011 and is broadcast nationally on NBC-TV, from 9am to 12pm, in all time zones.

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