‘Hirune Hime’ (Napping Princess) coming out in 2017; Kenji Kamiyama to direct for the first time in five years
Director Kenji Kamiyama has revealed his new and long-awaited project. He is a successful director with a history of glorious works including the ‘Koukaku Kidoutai-STAND ALONE COMPLEX’ (AKA Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex) series. His new movie is called ‘Hirune Hime-Shiranai Watashi no Monogatari’ (Napping Princess: The Story of the Unknown Me).
The movie is set in Okayama Prefecture just before the opening of Tokyo Olympics in 2020. It is going to be released nationwide by Warner Bros.
Kenji Kamiyama has an art background and successfully caught a great deal of attention by directing ‘Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade’. After that, he continuously directed ‘Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex’ and worked in its series. This definitely led him to greater success, getting international attentions as well. Then, he worked on ‘Guardian of the Sacred Spirits’ and ‘Eden of the East’, which both became big hits. ‘Hirune Hime-Shiranai Watashi no Monogatari’ (Napping Princess: The Story of the Unknown Me) is going to be the first full-length movie since ‘009 RE: CYBORG’ in 2012.
Unfortunately, we can’t tell much about the movie, yet, from the very first official report. However, we can get a glimpse of it from two unveiled designs of the main characters and a background. I think that the way the production revealed the setting of the movie, instead of key visuals, actually makes the audience soaks into its art concept and images.
The main characters are a girl, Kokone Morikawa, and a sidecar ‘Hearts’ that can turn into a robot. Kokone, just like a typical teenage girl, was originally designed by Satoko Morikawa from ‘The Cat Returns’. This is the first work for her since designing for Kamiyama’s short animation ‘Xi AVANT’.
The artwork for ‘Hearts’ was done by Shigeto Koyama. He’s done the character design for ‘HEROMAN’ and worked as an art director for ‘Kill la Kill’. His unique design is very well known for the concept design of ‘Big Hero 6’.
The other unveiled design, the background, was the Great Seto Bridge. I’m well intrigued by these designs, wondering what sort of stories will roll around them.
Now, I’d like to talk about the anime production, Signal.MD. It was established by IG Port in 2014 as its 4th anime studio following I.G, XEBEC and WIT STUDIO. The history of the company is only short, so this movie would turn into an ultimate winning card for them.
Warner Bros. Animation distributed many big anime movies, such as ‘Summer Wars’ (Directed by Mamoru Hosoda) in 2009, ‘Gintama The Movie: The Final Chapter: Be Forever, Yorozuya’ and ‘Puella Magi Madoka Magica (New Edition) Rebellion’ both in 2013. People will possibly have higher expectations of ‘Hirune Hime’ for the facts that it is going to be directed by famous Kenji Kamiyama and it’s been a while since he did a full-length movie last.
Comment from Kenji Kamiyama (Director and Screenplay Writer)
‘I had been asking myself how a role of animation movies should be, facing and living in such a harsh reality today. One day, someone said, “why don’t you create something that you would like your own daughter to watch?” Then, suddenly, a story of an innocent girl and a father came into my head.
Although, it wasn’t as easy as it sounds. I struggled everyday to make it better and to have a good grip on my daughter’s attention.
This is a movie based on ‘a story of a father and his daughter’, who stay close to minimum thought of one individual.’
‘Hirune Hime-Shiranai Watashi no Monogatari’ (Napping Princess: The Story of the Unknown Me).
Premier screening in 2017
Official website: http://www.hirunehime.jp
Director/Screenplay Writer: Kenji Kamiyama
Original Character Designer: Satoko Morikawa
‘Hearts’ Designer: Shigeto Koyama
Animation Director: Atsuko Sasaki
Anime Production Studio: Signal.MD.
Distributor: Warner Bros.
(c)2017 Hirune Hime Production Committee
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