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Windwalkers Films With Yoshitaka Amano Hold Kickstarter Campaign

posted on by Egan Loo
Animatrix's Morimoto, Blue Submarine No. 6's Kusanagi listed on 6-film fantasy project

The French studio Forge Animation launched a Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign for Windwalkers, a series of six 50-minute animated films with creators from France, Japan, and other countries, on May 27. The project would adapt the 2004 French fantasy novel The Horde Of The Counterwind (La Horde du Contrevent) by Alain Damasio.

Forge Animation describes the story:

Imagine an Earth that is shaped by the wind. Imagine winds so fierce, they cover the surface of the world and destroy everything in their paths.

The various fauna, flora, and human civilizations, have adapted to this “hell,” with the hope that one day the wind will stop.

In Aberlass, a city set against an immense cliff, every generation a group of young boys and girls are chosen for their potential and are trained to "counter" the wind. They become the HORDE. They leave the city as young adults and walk windwards, facing the wind their entire lives, to find the mysterious origin of the winds. They are the WINDWALKERS.

There have been thirty-three attempts in eight hundred years, thirty three Hordes that have failed. This is the story of the thirty-fourth, and most probably the last…

Damasio's original novel won the French novel category in France's Grand Prix de l'Imaginaire speculative fiction awards in 2006. The book became a bestseller in France, and an Italian-language version has also been released. According to the Kickstarter campaign site, an English version is coming soon.

Among the project's designers is Yoshitaka Amano, who is arguably best known for his contributions to the Vampire Hunter D and Final Fantasy franchises, as well as his collaboration with English graphic novelist Neil Gaiman on Sandman: The Dream Hunters. Amano previously worked with Forge Animation on the "Birth" short with music by Akino Arai (Macross Plus). Other listed Japanese staff members include Kōji Morimoto (The Animatrix, Memories, Genius Party) and Takuhito Kusanagi (Blue Submarine No. 6, Chaika the Coffin Princess, Samurai 7).

The project was previously planned as one 90-minute film with Japanese visual effects company Digital Frontier (Tekken: Blood Vengeance, Resident Evil: Damnation, Resident Evil: Degeneration) co-producing. However, Forge Animation states that it would be "almost impossible" to adapt the story into one movie, and added that it has material "to develop it into a 12 episode series and to create a season II, III, IV..."

Forge Animation also launched a Kickstarter campaign for a Windwalkers prequel game in February, although it ended without being funded in March.

Thanks to Catsuka and camminata for the news tips

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