MISS HOKUSAI from Production I.G in 2015
New Anime Feature Film based on the Manga Sarusuberi
Source: Production I.G press release
Production I.G announces MISS HOKUSAI (百日紅, Sarusuberi), the new animated feature film from acclaimed Annecy-winning director Keiichi Hara (SUMMER DAYS WITH COO, COLORFUL). The movie is based on the original manga, Sarusuberi by Hinako Sugiura, and it is scripted by Miho Maruo (COLORFUL). The main staff includes character designer and chief animator Yoshimi Itazu (DENNO COIL, THE WIND RISES, DREMING MACHINE) and background artist Hiroshi Ono (A LETTER TO MOMO, WOLF CHILDREN). MISS HOKUSAI is slated for theatrical release in Japan in 2015.
The time: 1814.
The place: Edo, now known as Tokyo.
One of the highest populated cities in the world, teeming with peasants, samurai, townsmen, merchants, nobles, artists, courtesans, and perhaps even supernatural things.
A much accomplished artist of his time and now in his mid-fifties, Tetsuzo can boast clients from all over Japan, and tirelessly works in the garbage-loaded chaos of his house-atelier. He spends his days creating astounding pieces of art, from a giant-size Bodhidharma portrayed on a 180 square meter-wide sheet of paper, to a pair of sparrows painted on a tiny rice grain. Short-tempered, utterly sarcastic, with no passion for sake or money, he would charge a fortune for any job he is not really interested in.
Third of Tetsuzo’s four daughters and born out of his second marriage, outspoken 23-year-old O-Ei has inherited her father’s talent and stubbornness, and very often she would paint instead of him, though uncredited. Her art is so powerful that sometimes leads to trouble. “We’re father and daughter; with two brushes and four chopsticks, I guess we can always manage, in a way or another.”
Decades later, Europe was going to discover the immense talent of Tetsuzo. He was to become best known by one of his many names: Katsushika Hokusai. He would mesmerize Renoir and van Gogh, Monet and Klimt.
However, very few today are even aware of the woman who assisted him all her life, and greatly contributed to his art while remaining uncredited. This is the untold story of O-Ei, Master Hokusai’s daughter: a lively portrayal of a free-spirited woman overshadowed by her larger-than-life father, unfolding through the changing seasons.
About the Director
Keiichi Hara (Tatebayashi, 1959) graduated from Tokyo Designer Gakuin College and joined the animation studio Shin-ei Doga, where he worked as episodic director for the hugely popular series, DORAEMON (ドラえもん). After directing a number of TV series, he then became part of the production team of another hit family series, CRAYON SHIN-CHAN (クレヨンしんちゃん Kureyon Shinchan), that he directed from 1996. His 2002 Shin-chan movie, entitled CRAYON SHIN-CHAN: BRILLIANT! THE GREAT BATTLE OF THE WARRING STATES (クレヨンしんちゃん 嵐を呼ぶ アッパレ!戦国大合戦, Kureyon Shinchan Arashi o Yobu Appare! Sengokudaigassen, 2002) was commended by Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs. International recognition came with Japan Academy Prizes-winners SUMMER DAYS WITH COO (河童のクゥと夏休み, Kappa no Kuu to Natsuyasumi, 2007) and especially with COLORFUL (カラフル, Karafuru, 2010), which was greeted with the Jury’s Special Distinction and the Audience Award at Annecy 2011. Both movies received theatrical distribution in France and other countries. Hara admires classic Japanese filmmakers such as Keisuke Kinoshita, to whom he dedicated his first live-action movie in 2013, DAWN OF A FILMMAKER: THE KEISUKE KINOSHITA STORY (はじまりのみち, Hajimari no Michi).
About the Original Author: Hinako Sugiura
Hinako Sugiura (1958-2005) was a manga artist and researcher in the lifestyles and customs of Japan’s Edo period. Her distinctive style and unique storytelling made her win the Japan Cartoonists Association Award for Gasso (合葬, Joint Burial, 1984) and the Bungei Shunju Manga Award for Furyu Edo Suzume (風流江戸雀, A Refined Edo Sparrow, 1988). She also wrote numerous essays, and frequently appeared in the media as an expert on the period. Her manga, Sarusuberi on which MISS HOKUSAI is based, was published between 1983 and 1987, and gained cult status since then for the vivid portrayal of Hokusai’s daughter.
Director: Keiichi Hara
Original Story: Hinako Sugiura (from the graphic novel Sarusuberi)
Screenplay: Miho Maruo
Character Designer / Key Animation Supervisor: Yoshimi Itazu
Art Director: Hiroshi Ono
Animation: Production I.G
Presented by: Sarusuberi Film Partners
© 2014 Hinako Sugiura • MS.HS / Sarusuberi Film Partners
About Production I.G
Started as the joint collaboration of visionary production manager Mitsuhisa Ishikawa and popular character designer Takayuki Goto, Production I.G was established on December 15, 1987.
The company has produced a number of acclaimed feature films, OVA (original video animation), TV shows, and videogames. For their storytelling and quality of animation, GHOST IN THE SHELL (1995, directed by Mamoru Oshii, No. 1 in US Billboard Top Video Sales Chart 1996), JIN-ROH: THE WOLF BRIGADE (1999, directed by Hiroyuki Okiura, Jury’s Special Prize at Fantasporto 1999), and BLOOD: THE LAST VAMPIRE (2000, directed by Hiroyuki Kitakubo), have earned critical accolades in Japan and all around the world. INNOCENCE, directed by Mamoru Oshii in 2004, became the first Japanese animation feature ever to compete for the Palme d’Or at the Festival de Cannes. In 2008, Mamoru Oshii’s animated feature film, THE SKY CRAWLERS, was nominated for the Golden Lion at the 65th Venice Film Festival and won 3 awards at Sitges in the same year. The studio’s first 3DCG animation feature film, OBLIVION ISLAND: HARUKA AND THE MAGIC MIRROR (2009), directed by Shinsuke Sato was Animation of the Year at the 33rd Japan Academy Prizes.