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Sword of the Stranger to Begin LA/NYC Run on July 18

posted on by Egan Loo
Samurai film from Escaflowne/Cowboy Bebop/Fullmetal Alchemist staff, cast

Sword of the Stranger, the newest film from the Bones animation studio of Escaflowne, Cowboy Bebop, and Fullmetal Alchemist fame, will open in Los Angeles and New York City next Friday, July 18. The film revolves around a nameless samurai ("Nanashi") and the boy he vows to protect from forces both foreign and domestic. The ImaginAsian theater group will host the showings in both cities in Japanese with English subtitles.

Stranger director Masahiro Ando (no relation to the Sailor Moon episode director with the same name) supervised the animation on Cowboy Bebop: The Movie, and he also storyboarded Fullmetal Alchemist television episodes and the film. Ando appeared in person at Stranger's American premiere at Anime Expo last week. Before writing the screenplay for Stranger, Fumihiko Takayama directed Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket and Patlabor WXIII. Naoki Satō wrote the music in the Eureka Seven and X television series and he recently won a Japanese Academy Award for his Always: Sunset on Third Street film soundtrack.

The Japanese soundtrack features Tokio band member Tomoya Nagase (Ikebukuro West Gate Park, Seoul) as "Nanashi" and child actor Yuri Chinen (Ninja Hattori Kun The Movie) as the boy Kotarou. The main lead character voices from three of the biggest BONES hits are also collaborating here for the first time: Kouichi Yamadera (Cowboy Bebop's Spike), Maaya Sakamoto (Escaflowne's Hitomi), and Mamoru Miyano (Wolf's Rain's Kiba). When the movie opens wider in North America later this year, it will feature an English voice cast that includes Aidan Drummond, Michael Adamthwaite, Scott McNeil, Brian Dobson, and Ken Kramer.

Image © Bones/Stranger Production Committee

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