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Saudi Arabia's Manga Productions, Toei Animation Reveal Title, More Staff, Visual for Upcoming Collaboration Film (Updated With Video)

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Tetsuro Iwamoto designs characters, Kaoru Wada composes music for The Journey film.

Toei Animation and Saudi Arabian media company Manga Productions revealed at the Cannes Film Festival on Sunday the title, visual, and more staff for one of its upcoming collaboration projects. The film collaboration is titled The Journey.

Manga Productions also began streaming a trailer for the film later on Sunday, revealing the film will release in 2020.

As previously announced, Kobun Shizuno (Detective Conan films) is directing the film, and Atsuhiro Tomioka (Pokémon films) is writing the script. Sunday's announcement revealed that Tatsurō Iwamoto (Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney game series) is the film's lead character designer, and Kaoru Wada (Ninja Scroll, Saint Seiya: The Lost Canvas, InuYasha, Ace Attorney) will compose the music. The companies will produce the film in both Japan and Saudi Arabia (Manga Productions has branches in Riyadh and Tokyo). Manga Productions is fully financing the film, and has the worldwide distribution rights.

Manga Productions previously streamed a teaser trailer in November 2017 for "The Woodcutter's Treasure," its first collaboration with Toei Animation. The project is a 25-minute animation based on Saudi Arabian folklore and aimed at children and families, and it served as a pilot for a television series. The company stated in November 2017 that it has two upcoming projects with Toei Animation: a 13-episode television series and a 90-minute film.

Manga Productions also streamed a trailer in February for a separate new animated series releasing this year, but it is currently unclear if this work is also part of the partnership with Toei Animation.

Manga Productions is a subsidiary of the Prince Mohammed bin Salman Foundation, also known as MiSK, and named for Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia. The company aims to create animation, comic, and video game projects " to "promote Saudi ideas and messages internationally." MiSK signed a memorandum with Japan's Digital Hollywood University in October 2017 to train Saudi designers and programmers in creating animation and games.

Update: Embedded teaser video.

Sources: Variety (Nick Vivarelli), Manga Productions' Facebook page


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