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Kenji Studio's Santa Company Anime Gets Extended Theatrical Version Opening in Japan in December

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Kana Hanazawa replaces Ayumi Fujimura in Noel role; Coluboccoro anime screens alongside film

KENJI STUDIO announced on Monday that Kenji Itoso's Santa Company short anime is getting a new extended film version titled Santa Company: Christmas no Himitsu (The Secret of Christmas) that will open in Japanese theaters in December. The new version is commemorating 100 years of diplomatic relations between Japan and Finland.

The film will feature new scenes and an expanded story, and Itoso wrote the new scenario that will be featured in the film. KENJI STUDIO will launch a new crowdfunding campaign on Sony Bank Gate on June 20. The studio will then launch another crowdfunding campaign on the Japanese service Makuake and on Kickstarter in August.

The new film will feature Kana Hanazawa in the role of Noel White (Ayumi Fujimura played the role in the original short anime), and Yūsuke Kondō in the role of Nicholas White (Hiroki Touchi played the role in the original).

The new film stars:

Itoso is again credited with the original work and is directing and writing the script for the film. Hidari (Fractale, Natsu-iro Kiseki) is credited again for the character design. KENJI STUDIO is credited with writing, and Asahi Production is the production studio. Starry Cube is credited with planning and producing.

Itoso held a Kickstarter campaign in 2013 to fund Santa Company, which met its US$50,000 goal. The original anime debuted at the Tokyo International Film Festival in October 2014.

The story revolves around Noel, a 12-year-old girl who despises Christmas. She has lived with her father ever since her parents divorced three years ago, but her father ends up busy at work every Christmas and she cannot play with her friends from school.

On a lonely Christmas Eve, Noel takes her usual apartment complex elevator ride to her home, but when the doors open, she finds herself lost in a humongous factory — owned by Santa Claus. Santa Claus has gone corporate as Santa Company with the motto "Fast, Reliable and Secret Delivery." The outfit takes orders and delivers top-notch presents to children in the utmost secrecy. Noel meets some new friends, and together, they take off in a sled to deliver presents.

The new film will also screen alongside KENJI STUDIO's other anime project, Coluboccoro (pictured below). The anime was originally a fantasy short that Itoso produced with Anime Innovation Tokyo, and it won the grand prize in the Creative Market Tokyo 2011 event. A Kickstarter campaign funded a release on home video with English subtitles.

Sources: Santa Company's website, KENJI STUDIO's YouTube channel, Comic Natalie

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