Tezuka's Final Unfinished Anime To Be Completed by Son
posted on by Egan Loo
Macoto Tezka, the film director also known as Makoto Tezuka, announced on his blog on Sunday that he is completing Legend of the Forest, the final unfinished work of his late father and anime pioneer Osamu Tezuka. Legend of the Forest or Mori no Densetsu began production in 1987, but only the first and fourth of its four parts were completed before the elder Tezuka passed away in 1989. The film is set to the four movements of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4, as performed by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Similar to Walt Disney's Fantasia, the elder Tezuka had planned the work as an experimental film that synchronized classical music with animation.
The film's two completed parts were already released in Japanese IMAX giant-screen theaters in 2003, but the director's oldest son intends to complete his father's final task. The younger Tezka is a respected live-action film and anime director in his own right; he has directed at least 13 short and feature-length films, as well as three television series. Those include four anime based on his father's Black Jack manga: the 2004-2006 television adaptation, Black Jack Special: The 4 Miracles of Life, the Black Jack: The Two Doctors Of Darkness film, and the Black Jack 21 television series.
As the head of Tezuka Productions, the younger Tezka had approved and has been supervising Pluto, the re-imagining of his father's Astro Boy science-fiction world by acclaimed suspense manga creator Naoki Urasawa (Monster, 21st Century Boys). Viz Media announced at California's Comic-Con International last month that it will be releasing the manga. The production studio and staff that will complete Legend of the Forest will be announced later.
America's Right Stuf International and Australia's Madman Entertainment had licensed Legend of the Forest in the past, and the half-hour compilation of the two finished parts has been screened at various international film festivals. Tezuka Productions released the two completed parts on Apple's online iTunes Store in the United States.
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