While Studio Ghibli has long been synonymous with animation, the Japanese studio has recently been dabbling in something a little different with its latest feature film, Aya and the Witch.
Up until now, we haven’t had a glimpse of what the new movie is going to look like, especially since this is Studio Ghibli’s first time truly delving into 3D animation. But from what we can see from Japanese broadcaster NHK (via SoraNews24), Aya and the Witch is shaping up to be something else.
The character in the foreground looks to be the titular lead protagonist, Aya, and behind her are three characters whose details have yet to be revealed. But from the looks of it, Aya won’t be the only kid in the story, with the rest of the images below (via AnimeAnime):
Many questions still plague our minds with these images. Who are the other kids? Who are the three adults playing in a band with Aya? Is the lady in the solo image the witch, and what is her relation to the three similarly-haired adults? Who’s the Nosferatu-like guy? And does the black cat speak?
Regardless, one thing is certain: Studio Ghibli is certainly making full use of its resources to make something truly befitting of its evolution as an animation studio in 2020.
The animated movie, based on the children’s book Earwig and the Witch by English author Dianna Wynne Jones, is Studio Ghibli’s first-ever CG movie, with Goro Miyazaki, son of Hayao Miyazaki, as the director. Speaking to NHK, Goro-san alluded this story to how children deal with adults. Here’s what he said, translated:
In Japan today, there are many adults, and few children. I think it must be hard for that small number of kids, because they have to deal with so many adults. While I was thinking about that, I met Aya, and I thought, ‘Ah, this is it! This is how to deal with them.’
So please watch Aya and the Witch and see how she deals with adults who are a pain in the neck. I sincerely hope that our Aya, who has a mean streak but is cute, will give courage to children and energize adults.
Aya and the Witch is certainly shaping up to be quite a picturesque journey. Fans of Studio Ghibli and the Miyazakis’ works can certainly look forward to it when it releases in theatres in Winter 2020.
Marion has a serious RPG addiction. Sometimes it bleeds into real life; he forgets to sleep because he thinks he has a Witcher’s body clock. Forgive him in advance if he suddenly blurts out terms such as “Mind Flayer” and “Magic Missile”, because never once does he stop thinking about his next Dungeons & Dragons game.