New Studio Ghibli Film To Be Released In Winter This Year
The film, which will be called Aya and the Witch, is an adaptation of a book written by Diana Wynne Jones called Earwig and the Witch.
You can see why they've changed that name around, can't you?
The plot focuses on an orphaned girl whose life is turned completely upside down after she is adopted by a witch.
This is the second time that Studio Ghibli has adapted one of Wynne Jones' novels, following the wildly popular Howl's Moving Castle in 2004.
This movie is set to air on Japan's biggest TV station, NHK, at some point later in the year. It's coming out before the long-awaited next effort from studio co-founder Hayao Miyazaki - titled How Do You Live? - which remains a few years away from completion.
Behind the camera - figuratively, because it's going to be an animated film - will be Hayao's son Goro Miyazaki.
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That being said, Hayao himself is to be credited with overseeing production.
It's a first for Studio Ghibli, as Aya and the Witch will be the first film that has come out of the legendary Japanese animated filmmakers to be completely made in 3D CG (computer generated) animation.
They've dabbled in the format before, co-producing a TV series - which was also directed by Goro Miyazaki - called Ronja, the Robber's Daughter.
However, this is the first time they've made a fully 3D CG film outright.
Hayao Miyazaki has also had a crack at 3D CG with short film Boro the Caterpillar, but he's returned to his classic hand-drawn style for his forthcoming effort.
There isn't currently a set date for the release of the film, so all we can currently tell you is that it's going to come out at some point during the winter, and will initially air on NHK.
That being said, you'd have to imagine given the popularity of Studio Ghibli around the globe, there will be arrangements set in place to have the film shown around the world - or on the internet - before too long.
There will surely be a few Ghibli enthusiasts who will be wary of seeing their distinctive style of animation created exclusively through computer generation, but they've produced other films that haven't been hand drawn before, so hopefully they'll pull it out of the bag again.
Featured Image Credit: Paul O. Zelinsky