Hitoshi Ariga: Klonoa Animated Film Project is Cancelled

posted on by Alex Mateo & Crystalyn Hodgkins
Mega Man artist Hitoshi Ariga planned to work on film

Manga creator Hitoshi Ariga revealed on Twitter on Saturday that the planned animated film adaptation of Bandai Namco Entertainment's Klonoa video game series is cancelled. Ariga apologized to all fans of the franchise who were looking forward to the project, and thanked fans for all their encouragement and support. Ariga stated he hoped for a new adventure for the character in the future.

Ariga (Mega Man Megamix, Megaman Gigamix, Big O manga, Pokémon illustrations) was slated to pen the script, co-produce, and design the characters for the project.

United States-based production company Henshin's founder Rob Pereyda confirmed with ANN on Thursday that the company was no longer working on the project, but did not confirm at the time if the project was still active. Pereyda, who would have served as the film's producer, gave the following statement: "Henshin is no longer working on the project. It was a pleasure working with everyone involved, and we wish them all the best." ANN was in the process of confirming the project's status with Bandai Namco Entertainment when Ariga confirmed the cancellation.

Pereyda was previously the producer and editor-in-chief of ShiftyLook, a subsidiary of Bandai Namco Entertainment (then known as Namco Bandai Games) that focused on web comics, cartoons, and games based on classic Namco franchises. ShiftyLook launched animated series based on games such as Wonder Momo, Bravoman, and Mappy. Pereyda founded Henshin in 2014.

Ariga previously serialized a Klonoa web comic titled Klonoa: Dream Traveller of Noctis Sol for ShiftyLook from 2012 to 2014.

Namco launched the first Klonoa game, Klonoa: Door to Phantomile, for the PlayStation in 1997. The second numbered sequel, Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil, shipped for the PlayStation 2 in 2001. Two handheld games, Kaze no Klonoa: Moonlight Museum and Klonoa: Empire of Dreams, also shipped for the WonderSwan and Game Boy Advance, respectively. Namco released Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament and Klonoa Heroes: Densetsu no Star Medal on the Game Boy Advance in 2002. A remake of the first game shipped for the Wii in 2008.

The games center on the titular Klonoa, a kind and good-hearted "Dream Traveler" who protects the dreams of various worlds along with his friends Hewpoe, Lolo, Popka, and more.

Image by Hitoshi Ariga, courtesy Henshin, Inc. © Bandai Namco Entertainment, Inc.

Sources: Email correspondence, Hitoshi Ariga's Twitter account (link 2) via Hachima Kikō, Otakomu

Disclosure: Bandai Namco Rights Marketing, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai Namco Holdings Inc., is a non-controlling, minority shareholder in Anime News Network Inc.

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