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'Urbance' Animation Project Runs Kickstarter With Animation Director Hiroshi Shimizu

posted on 2014-10-22 04:30 EDT
Campaign looking to raise CAD$189,000 for 8-minute pilot

Conceptual art company Steambot's co-founders Jöel Dos Reis Viegas and Sébastien Larroudé gave more details on the involvement of animation director Hiroshi Shimizu and Franco-Japanese animation studio, Yapiko Animation, in their "Urbance" animation project's Kickstarter campaign on Saturday. Yapiko Animation founder Eddie Mehong collaborated with Steambot to get Shimizu to join the project as animation director if the Kickstarter campaign succeeds. Shimizu would oversee animators at Yapiko Animation.

Shimizu worked with Studio Ghibli as an animator on Only Yesterday, Porco Rosso, Pom Poko and Princess Mononoke. He later worked as an animation director on Shingu: Secret of the Stellar Wars, Monster, Kemonozume, Michiko & Hatchin, One Piece Episode of Luffy: Hand Island no Bōken, and Space Dandy.

Steambot is hoping to raise CAD$189,000 by November 6 to fund an eight-minute pilot episode. The company then plans to present the pilot to broadcasters, investors, and festivals to fund a full series. Any donations raised beyond the US$189,000 goal will be used to fund the first episode. The campaign page is also streaming a trailer for the project.

The campaign elaborates in the FAQ that one of the show's topics is homosexual discrimination. Its page describes the story:

"In a post-modern city torn by street violence, sex is prohibited because of a deadly genetical virus infecting the entire population. Men and women have grown apart, hating each other until two young rebels, disowned by their own gangs, are leading the fight to live their love freely."

In the crumbling inner city, sex kills. The urban landscape is split in two — men on one side, women on the other— opposing each other. COEVO seems to be the only hope: a government medical treatment developed to cure every single citizen except that those wearables haven't produced the expected results yet...

Born among this lost generation of frustrated gangs, Kenzell and Lesya live each day as their last, defying anyone who stands in the way of their union. Like modern avatars of Romeo and Juliet, they will have to choose between love or their kind, Passion VS Reason, Deadly Eves VS Neo Blasterz... In their flamboyant relationship lies the premises of a revolution against the authorities, the vicious Mediators and their mysterious separatist laws. Rebels can change the world.

The project's reward tiers include a CAD$250 (about US$221) that includes a "dojinshi" signed by Shimizu and Viegas including the project's production materials.

The campaign raised CAD$104,265 of its CAD$189,000 goal as of press time.


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