Spirited Away in cinemas and on Blu-ray
Hayao Miyazaki’s anime adaptation returns to two Japanese cities and will premiere this summer.
Spirited Away is one of Studio Ghibli’s most popular films, and many fans may have been saddened that the theatrical adaptation of the animated masterpiece only premiered from February to July 2022.
This short period was particularly painful for overseas fans as Japan was largely closed to international tourism during this period.
Of course, a recorded version can also be viewed online, but the real charm of a stage production can only be felt by watching the actors perform it live. So it’s great news that Spirited Away is returning to Japanese cinemas. Live performances are planned for 2023 and 2024, with the premiere taking place this summer.
And it’s perhaps no coincidence that Nagoya is also the closest city to Ghibli Park theme park, which is about an hour east of downtown.
Tokyo will also see a new round of performances: the play will premiere in March 2024 at the capital’s Imperial Theater, also known as Teikoku Gekijo, in the Marunouchi district.
The creative team managed to capture the essence of the story and create an immersive visual and audio experience that will stay with me for years to come.
The intricate sets, well-executed puppets and beautiful music combine to create a magical atmosphere that transports you into this world.
The theatrical adaptation of Spirited Away is an outstanding achievement that manages to capture the essence of the original animated film while giving it its own twist. The production team paid tribute to Miyazaki’s masterpiece.
A Blu-ray home video release of the play has also been announced. Versions containing just Hashimoto or Kamishiraishi (including their respective program booklets) cost 11,000 yen ($82).
For die-hard fans, there’s a ¥33,000 deluxe box set that bundles the two full performances of the play along with a bonus CD with extras like interviews and fan salutes. The play itself is subtitled in English, but the bonus features don’t seem to have been translated.
The Blu-ray will be available on July 29th. Tickets for re-performances of the play are not yet on sale, but when they are they can be purchased here on Spirited Away’s official website.
Actresses Kanna Hashimoto and Mone Kamishiraishi will reprise their collaborative role as protagonist Chihiro, continuing the production’s “double-casting” system, with the actresses rotating between roles on different days.
Although the exact dates have not yet been announced, the producers have announced that Spirited Away will premiere at the Misonoya Theater in Nagoya in August.
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