The victor of the prestigious award organised by France Football magazine will be announced on December 3.
He is joined by the holder and five-time victor Ronaldo, who is included after facing an allegation of rape by a woman he met in Las Vegas in 2009, which the Juventus striker denies.
During the turn of the decade FIFA and Ballon d'Or merged together and was presented as one prestigious award but that association came to an end in 2016.
PSG's Mbappe appears a dead certainty for the newly-introduced Kopa Trophy, which rewards the best players under 21, and is voted on by previous Ballon d'Or winners.
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De Bruyne was nominated for helping City win the Premier League and Belgium reach the World Cup semi-finals.
Kylian Mbappe is third-favourite after winning the World Cup with France at the age of 19, with 6-1 odds.
Kane, the only English player to be named so far, is also up against Ronaldo's former Real Madrid team-mate Gareth Bale and Chelsea duo Eden Hazard and N'Golo Kante.
Thirty players will be announced on the shortlist for the 2018 award.
The Ballon d'Or, which was first won by Englishman Stanley Matthews in 1956, is decided by a ballot of journalists from around the world.