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Kumamon CG Anime Project Reveals Title, Visual, Design Work by Tonko House

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Anime planned for worldwide distribution in 2019

Kumamoto Prefecture announced on Sunday that the planned anime centering on the prefecture's Kumamon mascot character will be titled Mystery of Kumamon, and will have story concept, composition, and design by Tonko House. The animation studio will not handle the animation for the anime.

The text in the visual above reads, "What is happiness?"

The anime is planned for worldwide distribution. The anime's original announcement noted that the anime is slated for 2019.

Kumamoto Prefecture governor Ikuo Kabashima announced the anime at a press conference in January, along with the announcement that the Kumamoto Prefectural Government will allow foreign businesses to use the Kumamon mascot, except for businesses related to forestry, agriculture, and marine products.

Daisuke "Dice" Tsutsumi (Hayao Miyazaki's nephew-in-law) and Robert Kondo, both former Pixar art directors, founded Tonko House in 2014 and debuted the 18-minute Oscar-nominated short film "The Dam Keeper" in the same year. Tonko House is partnering with Fox Animation for a feature-length version.

Tonko House and Hulu Japan produced the Pig: The Dam Keeper Poems (Pig: Oka no Ue no Dam Keeper or "Pig: The Dam Keeper at the Top of the Hill"), a series of animated shorts based on "The Dam Keeper." The series debuted at the Short Shorts Film Festival event in Tokyo in June 2017, and began streaming on Hulu Japan in August 2017. NHK-E aired the series last November. One of the shorts won a "Cristal for a TV Production" award at Annecy in June.

Update: Tonko House noted that the anime will be a "CG animation series." Thanks, Liam.

Sources: Anime! Anime! (Tsubasa Matsumoto), Animation Business Journal (Tadashi Sudo), Tonko House Facebook page

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