Hayao Miyazaki’s new film, The Boy and the Heron is set to open the upcoming 48th Toronto International Film Festival on September 7 at the Roy Thomson Hall. Studio Ghibli animated the movie, which premiered in Japan earlier this month and is already breaking records.
According to the organizers, The Boy and the Heron will be the first Japanese film and animated film has opened the festival. Previously, several Studio Ghibli movies were screened at the festival in the past, including The Red Turtle (2016), The Tale of The Princess Kaguya (2014), The Wind Rises (2013), From Up on Poppy Hill (2011), Spirited Away (2002), and Princess Mononoke (1999).
“We are honoured to open the 48th Toronto International Film Festival with the work of one of cinema’s greatest artists. Already acclaimed as a masterpiece in Japan, Hayao Miyazaki’s new film begins as a simple story of loss and love and rises to a staggering work of imagination. I look forward to our audience discovering its mysteries for themselves, but I can promise a singular, transformative experience.”Statement from Cameron Bailey, CEO at the Toronto International Film Festival
The announcement comes weeks after The Boy and the Heron has been licensed by GKIDS for its North American release this year. It is also worth noting that GKIDS has licensed some of Studio Ghibli’s library of films across all theatrical, home video, digital, and streaming platforms for North America. The company released Studio Ghibli’s most recent films in theaters nationwide, including The Tale of The Princess Kaguya, When Marnie Was There, From Up on Poppy Hill, among others.
The Boy and the Heron film is directed by Hayao Miyazaki, produced by Toshio Suzuki, and with music by Joe Hisashi. Kenshi Yonezu performed the film’s theme song titled “Spinning Globe”. It opened in Japan on July 14 and earned $13.2 (1.83 billion yen) from July 14 to July 17, according to data from Comscore as reported by The Hollywood Reporter. Some of the cast involved in the production include Soma Santoki, Masaki Suda, Ko Shibasaki, Aimyon, Yoshino Kimura, Takuya Kimura, Kaoru Kobayashi, and Shinobu Otake.
The official Japanese titled can be translated as How Do You Live and shares the name with a novel by Yoshino Genzaburo, first published in 1937. The novel was republished in 1945 by Mira-sha Publishers following World War II. Barnes and Noble describe the plot as:
How Do You Live? is narrated in two voices. The first belongs to Copper, fifteen, who after the death of his father must confront inevitable and enormous change, including his own betrayal of his best friend. In between episodes of Copper’s emerging story, his uncle writes to him in a journal, sharing knowledge and offering advice on life’s big questions as Copper begins to encounter them. Over the course of the story, Copper, like his namesake Copernicus, looks to the stars, and uses his discoveries about the heavens, earth, and human nature to answer the question of how he will live.
Source: TIFF Official Website
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