Ghibli's Suzuki: We Wanted to Adapt the Parasyte Manga
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
Retired Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki revealed in a TokyoFM podcast with Genki Kawamura on April 13 that both he and Hayao Miyazaki were at one time interested in adapting Hitoshi Iwaaki's Parasyte manga at Ghibli. However, at the time the rights to an adaptation were held by U.S. film production company New Line Cinema.
Don Murphy's Angry Films first announced a live-action/CGI Hollywood adaptation of Parasyte was in the works in 1999 with Matt Manfredi and Phil Hey writing the script and Jim Henson Pictures producing. Director Takashi Shimizu was added to the project when it moved to New Line Cinema, but ultimately it never manifested. In the mean time, Ghibli moved on to other projects.
Suzuki commented that the themes of Parasyte are in line with Ghibli's own sensibilities and that Miyazaki was even a fan. Kawamura commented that Parasyte and Nausicaä have some similarities, and Suzuki agreed.
The rights to the series returned to Japan and the series has experienced a sort of renaissance despite the manga ending over a decade ago. Madhouse animated the recently completed 24-episode anime series and Genki Kawamura is directing two live-action films. Kodansha Comics reprinted the manga series in North America as well.
Thanks to Daniel Zelter for the news tip