Sydney Fest to Show Space Show, Summer Wars, Yona Yona
posted on by Egan Loo
The 57th Annual Sydney Film Festival will screen Koji Masunari's Welcome to the Space Show, Mamoru Hosoda's Summer Wars, and Rintaro's Yona Yona Penguin during its June 2-14 run this year. The festival is one of the oldest international film festivals, and it showcases both live-action and animated works. Welcome to the Space Show will be screened in Sydney on June 6 and June 13 — before the film opens in Japan on June 26. All three films will be part of the festival's Kids Flicks program.
The R.O.D. Read or Die anime franchise's core team of director Koji Masunari, writer Hideyuki Kurata, and character designer Masashi Ishihama created Welcome to the Space Show at A-1 Pictures Inc. This science-fiction film follows a group of children who experience a space-spanning adventure. The story will begin in the countryside during the summer vacation of fifth grader Natsuki Oyama. Natsuki just moved here, and she and four of her schoolmates are about to embark on an adventure that will take them beyond the fields they call home. The film had already been screened at the Berlin International Film Festival this past February.
Summer Wars is MADHOUSE's latest award-winning film from the team behind The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, including screenwriter Satoko Okudera and character designer Yoshiyuki Sadamoto. It follows a modern-day family on a midsummer adventure in the real and virtual worlds. The film opened in Japan on August 1, 2009, and has since been scheduled in Spain's Sitges, England's Leeds Film Festival, Germany's Berlin International Film Festival, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the New York International Children's Film Festival, the Irish Film Institute in Dublin, the Hawaii International Film Festival, the Winnipeg Festival of Animated, Illustrated and Puppet Film, and France's Annecy.
In the adventure story of Yona Yona Penguin, a penguin-cosplaying girl named Coco gets sucked into a fantasy world — which is populated by goblins who believe that their savior will be a penguin. This joint project between Thailand's Imagimax, Japan's Dynamo Pictures, and France's Def2Shoot opened in Japan in December. Among other films, Rintaro had previously directed Metropolis, X, and Space Pirate Captain Harlock. Comic book writer Warren Ellis reported last July that Rintaro also directed a Wolverine anime teaser. Yona Yona Penguin ran during the 66th Venice International Film Festival, and it won the Audience Award for Best Children's Animated Feature at Belgium's Brussels Animation Film Festival last month. It also ran in New York City's "Bollywood and Anime in America" event last month.
Images © A-1 Pictures/Welcome to THE SPACE SHOW Production Committee
© 2009 SUMMER WARS FILM PARTNERS.
© 2009 Rintaro + MADHOUSE, "Yona Yona, Penguin" Film Partners + DFP