Sylvain Chomet was born in 1963 in Maison-Lafitte, France. In 1982, he graduated from high school specializing in art and in 1987, he received a diploma from the prestigious comic-strip studio at Angoulême. In 1986, he published his first book-length comic, Secrets of the Dragonfly (Futuropolis), and drew an adaptation of a Victor Hugo novel, Bug-Jargal, in collaboration with Nicolas de Crécy. Moving to the UK to work as an animator at Richard Purdum’s studio, in September 1988 he established a London-based freelance practice working on commercials for clients such as Swissair, Principality, Swinton, and Renault.
In 1991, Chomet started work on his first animated film project, The Old Lady and the Pigeons, with backgrounds designed by de Crécy. In 1992, he wrote the script for a comic called The Bridge in Mud (Glénat), a science fiction and historical saga. The following year, he wrote the story for Léon-la-Came, drawn by de Crécy and serialized in À Suivre magazine. The book version was published by Casterman in 1995, going on to win the René Goscinny Prize in January 1996.
Since 1993, Chomet has been based in Canada. He spent 1995 and 1996 finishing his short film The Old Lady and the Pigeons. This film won the Cartoon d’Or prize, the Grand Prize at the Annecy Festival, a BAFTA, and the Audience Prize and Jury Prize at the Angers Premiers Plans Festival. It also received nominations for both the French César and the Academy Award.
In early 1997, Sylvain Chomet published Ugly, Poor, and Sick, again with de Crécy. The book version (Casterman) won the Alph-Art Best Comic Prize at the Angoulême Comic Strip Festival in 1997.
The Triplets of Belleville (2003) was Chomet’s first feature-length animated film, immediately becoming an international sensation.