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Lost in Translation
Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Boku-tachi wa Mada Shiranai. (anohana) scriptwriter Mari Okada revealed in the August issue of Media Factory's monthly Da Vinci magazine that the drama included slapstick erotic elements in its original conception. As a contemplative slice-of-life story with a quieter tone, the anime's final version differs greatly from the writer's original plans.
Okada explained that the anohana anime depicted friends' awkward youthful sexual attractions to each other during the story's first planning stage. The writer imagined balancing the slapstick erotic aspect with a deeper tone focusing on the flow of time through childhood. As Okada explained, it was later in the drama's development that the ghost and supernatural themes appeared.
Director Tatsuyuki Nagai and character designer and chief animation director Masayoshi Tanaka contributed to the story's evolution during planning, according to Okada. The anohana writer said her emotions were shaken after learning much of the story had to be changed in order for the anime's proposal to be accepted. During that phase, the two staffers suggested to Okada that the current story might have been too cliche and that focusing on friendship would be a better alternative.
Produced by A-1 Pictures, the eleven-episode Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Boku-tachi wa Mada Shiranai. anime premiered on Japanese television from April 11 to June 23 of this year.