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Madhouse's Aoi Bungaku to Animate 2 More Literary Works

posted on 2009-09-22 18:32 EDT
Yukikaze's Sakai to narrate Sakaguchi's "In the Forest, Under Cherries in Full Bloom," Akutagawa's "The Spider's Thread"

Next month's Aoi Bungaku Series (Blue Literature Series) television anime series will adapt Ango Sakaguchi's "In the Forest, Under Cherries in Full Bloom" ("Sakura no Mori no Mankai no Shita," two episodes) and Ryūnosuke Akutagawa's "The Spider's Thread" ("Kumo no Ito," one episode), in addition to the four literary classics previously revealed.

Sakaguchi's "In the Forest, Under Cherries in Full Bloom" is a love story between a 12th-century woman and a mountain bandit who abducts her. Masahiro Shinoda directed a live-action film version in 1975, and Yōko Kondō adapted the story into a manga (pictured at right) this past year. Akutagawa's "The Spider's Thread" tells the tale of a criminal who is given one last chance to escape hell, thanks to a single act of mercy towards a spider. The story was previously adapted by the 1975-1976 Manga Nihon Mukashi Banashi anime anthology of Japanese folk tales. Arguably the best-known adaptation of Akutagawa's works is Akira Kurosawa's Rashōmon film, which is based on Akutagawa's "In the Grove" and "Rashōmon" stories.

The other four stories in the anime are Osamu Dazai's No Longer Human (Ningen Shikkaku, four episodes), Soseki Natsume's Kokoro (two episodes), Akutagawa's Hell Screen (Jigoku Hen, one episode), and Dazai's Run, Melos! (Hashire Melos!, two episodes). The anime studio MADHOUSE is producing the 12-episode series with character designs based on the novel cover illustrations by Death Note artist Takeshi Obata (No Longer Human, Kokoro), Bleach creator Tite Kubo (Hell Screen) and The Prince of Tennis creator Takeshi Konomi (Run, Melos!).

35-year-old actor Masato Sakai will not only be a lead voice actor in the anime, but he will be the narrating "navigator" across the different stories. This will be his third anime project — he previously played Reiji Shiratori in Kochira Katsushika-ku Kamearikouen-mae Hashutsujo and the main lead Rei Fukai in Yukikaze. He also played Shuuji Hanamoto in the live-action Honey and Clover film.

The Aoi Bungaku Series anime will premiere in Japan on October 10 at 1:20 a.m.

Source: Sports Hochi


This article has a follow-up: Madhouse's Aoi Bungaku Posts Staff, Cast Lineup (2009-09-22 22:49)
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