MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER Production Notes and Images
New Anime Film Opens in North America and Australia on January 18th
Source: Toho Co., Ltd., GKIDS Inc., Madman Entertainment, Fathom Events
Official Site: maryflower.jp (Japan), gkids.com/films/mary-and-the-witchs-flower (US), madmanfilms.com.au/mary-and-the-witchs-flower (Australia)
MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER (メアリと魔女の花, Meari to Majo no Hana, 2017) — the first film from Studio Ponoc — opens in theaters in North America (from GKIDS and Fathom Events) and Australia (Madman Entertainment) on January 18, 2018. Please visit the movie’s official website’s (listed above) for ticket and theater information.
SciFi Japan is pleased to share the film’s English Production Notes from GKIDS, along with images and promotional artwork provided by GKIDS, Fathom Events, Madman and Japanese distributor, Toho…
From Academy Award-nominated Hiromasa Yonebayashi — animator on Studio Ghibli masterpieces SPIRITED AWAY (千と千尋の神隠し, Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi, 2001), HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE (ハウルの動く城, Hauru no Ugoku Shiro, 2004), and PONYO (崖の上のポニョ, Gake no Ue no Ponyo, 2008), and director of WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE (思い出のマーニー, Omoide no Maanii, 2014) and THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY (借りぐらしのアリエッティ, Karigurashi no Arrietty, 2010) — comes a dazzling new adventure about a young girl named Mary, who discovers a flower that grants magical powers, but only for one night.
Mary is an ordinary young girl stuck in the country with her Great-Aunt Charlotte and seemingly no adventures or friends in sight. She follows a mysterious cat into the nearby forest, where she discovers an old broomstick and the strange Fly-by-Night flower, a rare plant that blossoms only once every seven years and only in that forest. Together the flower and the broomstick whisk Mary above the clouds, and far away to Endor College — a school of magic run by headmistress Madam Mumblechook and the brilliant Doctor Dee. But there are terrible things happening at the school, and when Mary tells a lie, she must risk her life to try to set things right.
Based on Mary Stewart’s 1971 classic children’s book The Little Broomstick, MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER is an action-packed film full of jaw-dropping imaginative worlds, ingenious characters, and the and the stirring, heartfelt story of a young girl trying to find a place in the world. The English language version features the voices of Ruby Barnhill and Academy Award-winners Kate Winslet and Jim Broadbent.
HIROMASA YONEBAYASHI | DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT
After Studio Ghibli closed its production department, I left the studio with some of the production team. It was a sad, disappointing moment as a person who loved Ghibli, because after finishing When Marnie Was There, I found myself with one thought: “As long as there is the opportunity, I want to keep making feature animation.”
But nothing was certain anymore. Having only worked inside Ghibli’s protected environment, would I be able to start again from scratch and find a way to create an entire feature? With no staff or even a production studio, will I be able to raise funding for production? But despite all my insecurities, I had to continue animating, because I knew it was my job to do so.
Supporters of Ghibli productions and top talent from the Japanese animation industry gathered to work on this new film. We set up a new production company called Studio Ponoc. I spent nearly twenty years at Studio Ghibli, working with directors Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki. The skills and mindset that I acquired while at Ghibli are my treasures. Now, with these treasures close to my heart, I have dedicated all I can to creating this new film with my crew here with me.
We are striving to make MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER an experience filled with excitement and wonder that will entertain the audience. I also feel it’s a story about children who must live in the times ahead. It’s a story about living in a world where the magic of the twentieth century has lost its power. I hope you look forward to our film’s release.
April 13, 2017
ABOUT MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER
Director Hiromasa Yonebayashi now brings to life a dazzling work of animated entertainment, offering everything he has learned during nearly twenty years at Studio Ghibli!
Hiromasa Yonebayashi is a highly acclaimed director of animation, not only in Japan, but worldwide. His THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY was the top box-office-winning Japanese movie in the year of its release, and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 88th Academy Awards. His much-awaited first directorial work after his departure from Studio Ghibli is his animated feature MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER.
The film’s story is based on a children’s novel The Little Broomstick, written long before Kiki’s Delivery Service and the Harry Potter series. For his newest film he explored the world of “witches”, the same subject matter that his master of animation, director Hayao Miyazaki, chose previously.
It all started when producer Yoshiaki Nishimura was charmed by one bit of dialogue that he read in the original story: “And it wouldn’t be right to use the spellbook to unlock the front door, either. I’ll do it the way it’s used to, even if it does take longer…”
While this story is about witches, unlike the usual literatures about magic, its lead character Mary decides to proceed without relying on the magical powers at her disposal. This reflects director Yonebayashi’s decision to continue filmmaking as an individual animator, even after losing the magnificent Ghibli magic.
The strengths of director Hiromasa Yonebayashi’s films are the beautiful, elaborate background artwork and overwhelming animation. With his film MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER he has put in all of the animation know-how and creative spirit he acquired during his nearly twenty years at Studio Ghibli. MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER was 2017’s major animated production in Japan, and it will entertain and move the hearts of all generations.
■ The Rise of a New Witch!
A “human being, Mary”, with no magical powers, will show us what she is capable of with just a “bit of courage.”
Our protagonist is a freckled, redhead girl named Mary. She’s cheerful and lively, young and innocent, but her clumsy ways make her unhappy with daily life. Finding the forbidden “Witch’s Flower,” Mary is swooped up into an amazing, grand adventure.
Mary transforms into a witch using the magical properties of the Witch’s Flower and finds herself praised as a girl with extraordinary powers. But these powers are just temporary. To keep a promise, Mary departs on a journey to find the truth, but this is precisely when she loses all her witch’s powers.
Director Yonebayashi has been portraying the message of “taking up courage to live” through his films’ protagonists. With THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY, it was a girl who sets out on a voyage to the unknown, though she is at the mercy of fate. With WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, it was a young heroine facing solitude who takes her next steps. With his newest film, he shows the courage that exists beyond magic through his new heroine Mary.
Set in a magical world, Mary goes through many fun and scary adventures filled with heart-beating excitement, thrills and suspense, flying the skies and traveling beyond the clouds. After these dazzling adventures, Mary finds herself without any magical powers, only a simple broom and a single promise she made. This is when Mary discovers the true strength within herself.
■ Loss and Recovery, then Hope.
Film’s theme song “RAIN” by SEKAI NO OWARI and the mysterious sounds of the hammered dulcimer.
The film’s theme song is performed by the talented music group, SEKAI NO OWARI. The song, which opens with the words “We know that magic will not last forever…,” all began from an encounter at the end of 2016, and was delivered after a great deal of discussion between the four SEKAI NO OWARI members, director Yonebayashi and producer Nishimura. This outstanding song instantly feels familiar, as if it has always been there, close by, yet evokes a strong life force of its own. The song is about life and growth through the motif of “rain,” written from SEKAI NO OWARI’s very unique point of view. With lyrics that can be sung by all generations, children and adults alike, this theme song matches perfectly with the film MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER.
Unusual harmony with one musical instrument is heard throughout the film. It is the sound of the stringed percussion instrument called the hammered dulcimer.
In search of an uncommon musical instrument that could set the tone for the entire film, producer Nishimura consulted animation director Isao Takahata, who has an in-depth knowledge of this subject matter. Learning from Takahata about the hammered dulcimer, Nishimura decided to make it the central instrument for the film MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER. Heard both in the film’s background score by Takatsugu Muramatsu and in the theme song by SEKAI NO OWARI, the timbre of the hammered dulcimer symbolizes the “surprise” and “joy”, “mistakes” and “destiny”, and “a bit of courage” all depicted in the film. Prepare to be enchanted by the mystic performance by Joshua Messick, the world’s greatest hammered dulcimer player, who flew to Japan for the film score recording.
■ The Hand-Rendered Background Art, Lauded by the World, Will Not be Lost.
Background art studio Dehogallery, with Kazuo Oga and Yoji Takeshige
Just as Studio Ponoc was founded, a new background art studio was also born, called Dehogallery, Inc. Working with Kazuo Oga and Yoji Takeshige as advisors, who served as art directors on previous Studio Ghibli masterpieces, Dehogallery, Inc. was formed with eleven artists who have worked as background artists and art directors for feature-length animation, including for Studio Ghibli. Concerned that Studio Ghibli’s internationally praised art of hand-painted backgrounds may have been lost when Studio Ghibli closed its production department, DWANGO’s Nobuo Kawakami, Khara’s Hideaki Anno, and Studio Ponoc’s Yoshiaki Nishimura co-founded Dehogallery in 2015.
Art director Tomotaka Kubo and his group of artists, who represent Japan’s world-class craftsmanship in background art, painted the light and shadows of MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER’s real and fantasy worlds.
■ The Newborn Studio Ponoc Starts!
Graduates of Studio Ghibli, along with new talent from animation and other fields, have gathered to work on director Yonebayashi’s newest work.
To continue the Ghibli spirit at the new-born Studio Ponoc, talented artists and creators who worked on past Studio Ghibli productions have come together to work on director Yonebayashi and producer Nishimura’s newest work.
Nishimura, who heads Studio Ponoc, teamed up with director Yonebayashi as his producer again following When Marnie Was There.
The screenplay is by Riko Sakaguchi and director Hiromasa Yonebayashi. Sakaguchi also penned THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA (かぐや姫の物語, Kaguyahime no Monogatari, 2013). The film’s score is performed by Takatsugu Muramatsu, his second time working on a Yonebayashi film after WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE.
For the animation, Japan’s best animators gathered, centering around supervising animator Takeshi Inamura, Ei Inoue, and Akihiko Yamashita, all of whom participated in many Ghibli productions. Color styling was done by Fumiko Numahata, a protégé of “Ghibli’s color artisan”, the late Michiyo Yasuda. Visual direction was by Atsushi Okui, who has worked on all of Studio Ghibli’s Hayao Miyazaki films and all of Studio Ghibli’s recent films.
Production design was done by Tomoya Imai, who previously worked in production design for music videos from renowned artists, including Madonna. Susumu Fukushi, responsible for all of the Evangelion: The New Theatrical Edition films, is the director of cinematography, presenting a visual evolution of “Ghibli” and “Evangelion”.
This film’s production has also brought together other Studio Ghibli graduates, who have learned from directors Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki, alongside other creative talent. Under Studio Ponoc’s production banner they have come together, ready and determined to create their very best feature-length animation.
■ Mary Stewart (1916 – May 9, 2014) | British novelist and author of The Little Broomstick, the 1971 novel on which the film is based.
After working as a primary school teacher, Stewart joined the literary world when she published her first novel in 1954, Madam, Will You Talk? She is known for her works in the romantic mystery/suspense and historical fiction genres. Her work is highly regarded around the world. The Moon-Spinners was produced into a film by Disney in 1964. Many of her titles have been translated into Japanese, such as This Rough Magic (Kono araarashii majutsu, Chikuma Shobo – Sekai no Roman Bunko, 1969), A Walk in Wolf Wood (Ookamimori no noroi, Yugakusha, 1983), and The Little Broomstick (Meari to majo no hana, Kadokawa, 2017; translation by Toshiya Echizen and Yuki Nakata).
■ Riko Sakaguchi | Screenwriter
From Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture. A graduate of Waseda University and former employee of NHK Enterprises, Sakaguchi now does freelance writing as a novelist and award-winning screenwriter for movies, television, and theater. Her TV and movie credits include O-SHASHA NO SHAN! (2008 NHK drama; winner of the Television and Radio Writers’ Association of Japan’s Television Drama Award), FUROIDE! KANKI NO UTA DE SAYONARA WO (2009; winner of WOWOW Scenario Writer’s Award), KAZE NI KIKE (2010; winner of the Motion Picture Producers of Japan’s 36th Kido Award), THE REASON I CAN’T FIND MY LOVE (私が恋愛できない理由, Watashi ga renai dekinai riyu; 2011 Fuji TV drama; co-written with Takako Yamazaki), MUKODA KUNIKO INOSENTO: AI TO IU JI (Episode 4 of a 2012 WOWOW miniseries), THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA (directed by Isao Takahata), ITO NO MORI NO IE (2015 Fukuoka NHK drama; winner of NHK’s Housou Bunka Kikin Award).
■ Hiromasa Yonebayashi | Screenwriter and Director
From Nonoichi, Ishikawa Prefecture. While attending Kanazawa College of Art, he worked part-time drawing portraits and making animation for commercials. He joined Studio Ghibli in 1996 and worked as an in-between animator on PRINCESS MONONOKE (もののけ姫, Mononoke Hime, 1997) and MY NEIGHBORS THE YAMADAS (ホーホケキョとなりの山田くん, Hoohokekyo Tonari no Yamada-kun, 1999). He then became key animator and worked on SPIRITED AWAY, GHIBLIES Episode 2 (ギブリーズ, 2002), HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, and PONYO, and was Assistant Supervising Animator for TALES FROM EARTHSEA (ゲド戦記, Gedo Senki, 2006). Yonebayashi has also worked on short films and exhibits for the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, Tokyo, including as Directing Animator for MEI AND THE BABY CAT BUS (めいとこねこバス, Mei to Konekobasu, 2002) and Supervising Animator for IMAGINARY FLYING MACHINES (空想の空飛ぶ機械達, Kuusou no Sora Tobu Kikaitachi, 2002). He created the storyboards and animation for the museum’s permanent exhibit Films Go Round showpiece called SHINKA RON (Theory of Evolution; 2008).
THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY, his directorial debut, was the top Japanese film of 2010, with 7.65 million tickets sold and earning ¥9.25 billion. This was followed by WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, an Academy Award-nominated film. MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER is the third film in his directorial repertoire.
■ Takatsugu Muramatsu | Composer
From Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture. A graduate of Kunitachi College of Music. While still in high school, he made his musical debut with his piano solo album The Window (1996). During his college years he worked on music for various movies and TV shows such as INUGAMI (狗神; 2001) and THE CHOICE OF HERCULES (突入せよ！「あさま山荘」事件, Totsunyuu Seyo! Asamasansou Jiken, 2002), and became the youngest composer ever to provide music for a NHK TV series (Tenka (2004)). Muramatsu has composed for over 50 films, TV shows, and stage productions. His main representative works are THE INVITATION FROM CINEMA ORION (オリヲン座からの招待状, Orionza Kara no Shoutaijou, 2007), TOWN OF EVENING CALM, COUNTRY OF CHERRY BLOSSOMS (夕凪の街 桜の国, Yuunagi no Machi Sakura no Kuni, 2007), CLIMBER’S HIGH (クライマーズ・ハイ, Kuraimaazu Hai, 2008), OH! OKU (大奥, Oo oku, 2010), LIFE BACK THEN (アントキノイノチ, Antokinoinochi, 2011), THE CASTLE OF CROSSED DESTINIES (大奥～永遠～[右衛門佐・綱吉篇], Oo oku Eien, 2012), REUNION (遺体～明日への十日間～, Itai Asu e no toukakan, 2013), 64 (SIX FOUR) (64-ロクヨン, 64 Rokuyon Parts 1 and 2; 2016), and GOOD MORNING SHOW (グッドモーニングショー, Guddo Mooningu Shoo, 2016). He also has provided a wide range of music, from classical pieces to pop songs, to well-known musicians both in Japan and overseas.
Muramatsu composed the music for the studio Ghibli production by Hiromasa Yonebayashi WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, and was awarded for Best Music award at the 40th Japan Academy Film Awards for 64 (SIX FOUR).
■ Yoshiaki Nishimura | Producer
From Ota Ward, Tokyo. Joined Studio Ghibli in 2002, after having studied abroad in the U.S. He did advertising-related work for the “Let’s Eat at Home” series of TV commercials for House Foods, directed by Hayao Miyazaki, and was in charge of advertising for the Studio Ghibli films HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, TALES FROM EARTHSEA, and PONYO. Nishimura was the advertising producer for the DVD home video release of THE KING AND THE MOCKING BIRD (Le roi et l’oisea, 2006), a Studio Ghibli-distributed French animation title, and the Ghibli Museum Library collection film, CHEBURASHKA (2008).
THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA was his first feature-length film as a producer. After over 8 years in production, the film earned a nomination for Best Animated Feature at the 87th Academy Awards. WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, Nishimura’s second feature film as producer, was also nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 88th Academy Awards. Nishimura is the Founder and President of Studio Ponoc, and its first Producer.
■ Studio Ponoc
After leaving Studio Ghibli at the end of 2014, Yoshiaki Nishimura established his own animation studio on April 15, 2015. The origin of the studio’s name, ponoc, comes from an expression in Croatian meaning “midnight” and “the beginning of a new day”. The current film MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER is Studio Ponoc’s first feature animation, and involved a large number of creators and staff from Nishimura’s days at Studio Ghibli.
■ Takeshi Inamura | Supervising Animator
While at Shin-Ei Animation, Inamura was an in-between animator and in-between checker. After joining Studio Ghibli in 1991 he was a key animator and supervising animator for several productions. Notable works as a key animator include MY NEIGHBORS THE YAMADAS, SPIRITED AWAY, THE CAT RETURNS (猫の恩返し, Neko no Ongaeshi, 2002), THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY, and THE WIND RISES (風立ちぬ, Kaze Tachinu, 2013). He worked on PONYO and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE as the assistant supervising animator, and was the supervising animator for HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, TALES FROM EARTHSEA, and FROM UP ON POPPY HILL (コクリコ坂から, Kokuriko-Zaka Kara, 2011). He was also an animator for two Ghibli Museum short films, THE WHALE HUNT (くじらとり, Kujiratori, 2001) and TREASURE HUNTING (たからさがし, Takara Sagashi, 2011). Examples of films he has worked on after leaving Studio Ghibli include THE BOY AND THE BEAST (バケモノの子, Bakemono no Ko, 2015) and YOUR NAME (君の名は。, Kimi no Na wa., 2016).
■ Ei Inoue | Assistant Supervising Animator
Inoue has been working in animation as a freelancer since the 1980s. For television anime, Inoue was the supervising animator on works such as TICO OF THE SEVEN SEAS (七つの海のティコ Nanatsu no Umi no Tiko, 1994), ROMEO AND THE BLACK BROTHERS (ロミオの青い空 Romio no Aoi Sora, 1995), and COIL – A CIRCLE OF CHILDREN (電脳コイル Dennō Koiru, 2007). For feature animation, he did key animation for EVANGELION: 3.0 YOU CAN (NOT) REDO (ヱヴァンゲリヲン新劇場版：Q, Evangerion Shin Gekijooban: Kyuu, 2012), MISS HOKUSAI (百日紅, Sarusuberi, 2015), and THE BOY AND THE BEAST. He was assistant supervising animator for JIN-ROH: THE WOLF BRIGADE (人狼, Jinroo, 2000), PAPRIKA (パプリカ, Papurika, 2006), and A LETTER TO MOMO (ももへの手紙, Momo e no Tegami, 2012). He was the supervising animator for DORAEMON THE MOVIE: NOBITA AND THE LAST HAVEN -ANIMAL ADVENTURE- (映画ドラえもん のび太と奇跡の島 ～アニマル アドベンチャー～, Eiga Doraemon Nobita to Kiseki no Shima 〜Animal Adventure〜, 2012) and YOUR NAME. For Studio Ghibli works, he has worked on FROM UP ON POPPY HILL and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE as key animator, on THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA as animator, and for THE CAT RETURNS he was the supervising animator.
■ Akihiko Yamashita | Assistant Supervising Animator
Started his career as a freelance animator in the 1980s. For the original video animation (so-called “OVA”) title GIANT ROBO: THE NIGHT THE EARTH STOOD STILL (ジャイアント・ロボ – 地球が静止する日, Jaianto Robo – Chikyuu ga Seishi Suru hi, 1992-1998), Yamashita did character design, storyboarding and was the supervising animator. His first participation in Studio Ghibli film was as key animator for SPIRITED AWAY. He also was a key animator for THE WIND RISES, and was the supervising animator for other works such as HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, THE SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY, and FROM UP ON POPPY HILL. For PONYO and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, he was an assistant supervising animator. His directorial debut was the Ghibli Museum short film A SUMO WRESTLER’S TAIL (ちゅうずもう, Chuzumo, 2010). In recent years, he has been doing directional work for TV anime series, including MYSTERIOUS JOKER (怪盗ジョーカー, Kaitoo Jookaa, 2014-2016).
■ Kumiko Otani | In-between animation checker
Since starting her career freelancing in animation, Otani has taken part in many productions, original video animation (“OVA”) and feature animation, as an in-between animator and checker. Her major works include MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (となりのトトロ, Tonari no Totoro, 1988), KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (魔女の宅急便, Majo no Takkyuubin, 1989), and JUNKERS COME HERE (ユンカース・カム・ヒア, Yunkaasu Kamu Hia, 1995).
■ Fumiko Numahata | Color Stylist
Joined Studio Ghibli in 1995 and worked under Ghibli’s legendary color stylist Michiyo Yasuda, learning the craft of color design for animation. Numahata was in charge of color keying for TALES FROM EARTHSEA, only to leave the studio the following year. She was color stylist for other studios’ productions such as the movie FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST: THE SACRED STAR OF MILOS (鋼の錬金術師 嘆きの丘（ミロス）の聖なる星, Hagane no Renkinjutsushi: Mirosu no Sei-naru Hoshi, 2011) and the TV anime series SERAPH OF THE END (終わりのセラフ, Owari no Serafu, 2015). She has maintained her ties with Ghibli, doing the color keying for THE WIND RISES and color styling for the Ghibli Museum’s short film currently in production (BORO THE CATERPILLAR) directed by Hayao Miyazaki.
■ Tomotaka Kubo | Art Director
Kubo started out at Kobayashi Production, and is currently affiliated with Dehogallery. He has created background art for various movies and TV series, including FROM UP ON POPPY HILL, RAINBOW FIREFLIES (虹色ほたる～永遠の夏休み～ Niji-iro Hotaru: Eien no Natsu Yasumi, 2012), MAGIC TREE HOUSE (マジック・ツリーハウス, Majikku Tsuriihausu, 2012), THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA, WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, RONJA, THE ROBBER’S DAUGHTER (山賊の娘ローニャ, Sanzoku no Musume Roonya, 2014-15), and IN THIS CORNER OF THE WORLD (この世界の片隅に, Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni, 2016). For Studio Khara and Dwango’s short animation film series “Japan Anima(tor)’s Exhibition”, he did art direction on works such as 20 MIN WALK FROM NISHI-OGIKUBO STATION, 2 BEDROOMS, LIVING ROOM, DINING ROOM, KITCHEN, 2 MOS DEPOSIT, NO PETS ALLOWED (西荻窪駅徒歩20分2LDK敷礼2ヶ月ペット不可, Nishiogikubo eki Toho Nijuppun 2LDK Shikirei, Nikagetsu Petto Fuka) and HAMMERHEAD. MARY AND THE WITCH’S FLOWER is his first art director work for feature animation.
■ Dehogallery, Inc.
In 2015, Dwango’s Nobuo Kawakami, Khara’s Hideaki Anno, and Studio Ponoc’s Yoshiaki Nishimura established a company specializing in background art production. The company welcomed two renowned art directors of Studio Ghibli fame, Kazuo Oga and Yoji Takeshige, as advisors, and eleven artists with feature animation background experience, including for Studio Ghibli films. They aim to convey each movie’s complete world view with their comprehensive designs. Dehogallery was named by Kazuo Oga.
Japanese Theatrical Release: Saturday, July 8, 2017 (Toho)
North American Theatrical Release: Thursday, January 18, 2018 (GKIDS)
Australian Theatrical Release: Thursday, January 18, 2018 (Madman)
Running Time: 103 Minutes
MPAA Rating: PG
JAPANESE VOICE CAST
Mary: Hana Sugisaki
Peter: Ryunosuke Kamiki
Madame Mumblechook: Yuki Amami
Doctor Dee: Fumiyo Kohinata
The Red-Haired Witch: Hikari Mitsushima
Flanagan: Jiro Sato
Zebedee: Kenichi Endo
Miss Banks: Eriko Watanabe
Great-Aunt Charlotte: Shinobu Otake
ENGLISH VOICE CAST
Mary: Ruby Barnhill
Madam Mumblechook: Kate Winslet
Doctor Dee: Jim Broadbent
Flanagan: Ewen Bremner
Great-Aunt Charlotte: Lynda Baron
Peter: Louis Ashbourne Serkis
Miss Banks: Morwenna Banks
The Red-Haired Witch: Teresa Gallagher
Zebedee: Rasmus Hardiker
Light Fairy: Rebecca Louise Kidd
Directed by: Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Producer: Yoshiaki Nishimura
Based on the Novel The Little Broomstick by Mary Stewart
Screenplay by: Riko Sakaguchi and Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Supervising Animator: Takeshi Inamura
Assistant Supervising Animators: Ei Inoue and Akihiko Yamashita
In-Between Animation Checker: Kumiko Otani
Color Stylist: Fumiko Numahata
Art Director: Tomotaka Kubo
Music: Takatsugu Muramatsu
Theme Song: “RAIN”, composed by Nakajin, Fukase & Saori
Lyrics by: Fukase & Saori
Arranged by: SEKAI NO OWARI and Takeshi Kobayashi
Performed by: SEKAI NO OWARI
Director: Giles New
English-Language Screenplay Adaptation: David Freedman and Lynda Freedman
Producer: Geoffrey Wexler
Executive Producer: Will Clarke
Casting Director: Colin Jones
Translated from the Original Japanese by Taro Goto
Recording Studio: 2 Tamborine Sound Studios, London
A Studio Ponoc Film
© 2017 “Mary and the Witch’s Flower” Film Partners
About Studio Ponoc
Studio Ponoc is the new home of the next generation of creative minds behind films from the award-winning Studio Ghibli, which has delighted audiences with its breathtaking films for over 30 years including SPIRITED AWAY and PONYO. Studio Ponoc’s Oscar-nominated founder Yoshiaki Nishimura (THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE) brought together Oscar-nominated Hiromasa ‘Maro’ Yonebayashi (ARRIETTY and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE) with former Studio Ghibli animators and artists, and other renowned animators and artists, to create new films in the famed tradition of the breathtakingly beautiful hand-drawn and hand-painted animated works of Studio Ghibli.
About Toho Company. Ltd.
Founded in 1932, Toho Co., Ltd. is one of the leading entertainment conglomerates in Japan. Toho is best known worldwide as the producer of the Godzilla films, as well as most of the films by the world-renowned director, Akira Kurosawa. Besides film production, Toho also distributes Japanese films (earning the highest box office receipts for decades in Japan) as well as foreign films through its subsidiary, owns first class movie theaters throughout Japan, produces legitimate plays and musicals, and has more than 100 entertainment-related subsidiaries.
GKIDS is a producer and distributor of award-winning feature animation for both adult and family audiences. Since 2010, the company has scored an astounding nine Best Animated Feature Oscar nominations with THE SECRET OF KELLS in 2010, A CAT IN PARIS and CHICO & RITA in 2012, ERNEST & CELESTINE in 2014, THE TALE OF PRINCESS KAGUYA and SONG OF THE SEA in 2015, BOY AND THE WORLD and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE in 2016, and MY LIFE AS A ZUCCHINI in 2017. GKIDS also handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films, one of the world’s most coveted animation collections with titles SPIRITED AWAY, MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO, PRINCESS MONONOKE and others.
GKIDS recently launched ANIMATION IS FILM, an annual LA-based film festival. The first edition took place October 20-22 at the Mann Chinese Theater in Hollywood for a sold-out audience of 5,000. ANIMATION IS FILM embraces the highest aspirations of animation as a cinematic art form and is a vocal advocate for filmmakers who push the boundaries of their work to the fullest range of expression that the medium is capable of.
About Fathom Events
Fathom Events is recognized as the leading domestic distributor of event cinema with participating affiliate theaters in all 100 of the top Designated Market Areas, and ranks as one of the largest overall distributors of content to movie theaters. Owned by AMC Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: AMC), Cinemark Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CNK) and Regal Entertainment Group (NYSE: RGC) (known collectively as AC JV, LLC), Fathom Events offers a variety of one-of-a-kind entertainment events such as live, high-definition performances of the Metropolitan Opera, dance and theatre productions like the Bolshoi Ballet and National Theatre Live, sporting events like Copa America Centenario, concerts with artists like Michael Bublé, Rush and Mötley Crüe, the yearlong TCM Big Screen Classics film series and inspirational events such as To Joey With Love. Fathom Events takes audiences behind the scenes and offers unique extras including audience Q&As, backstage footage and interviews with cast and crew, creating the ultimate VIP experience. Fathom Events’ live digital broadcast network (“DBN”) is the largest cinema broadcast network in North America, bringing live and pre-recorded events to 896 locations and 1,383 screens in 181 DMAs. For more information, visit fathomevents.com.
Madman is Australia’s leading independent theatrical, home entertainment distribution and rights management company, specializing in the wholesale distribution of DVD and BLU RAY product into sales channels throughout Australia and New Zealand. Other rights management activities undertaken by madman include theatrical distribution, as well as licensing for television, video-on-demand, hotel, airline and merchandise.
Established back in 1996 by a couple of self-confessed nerds, keen to share their passion for awesome content, Madman is proudly independent, run by fans, for fans and is still managed by founders Tim Anderson and Paul Wiegard. Madman proudly showcases the best in collectible and special interest genres including Australian film, world cinema, TV, kids content, Anime, sports and more. Put simply, Madman is mad for entertainment.