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New Aria 15th Anniversary Project Recasts Athena With Rina Satou

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Late voice actress Tomoko Kawakami played Athena in previous anime installments

Shochiku producer Toshio Iizuka announced on Tuesday that the brand-new Aria work will cast Rina Satou (Maria Watches Over Us' Tsutako Takeshima, Negima!'s Negi Springfield, A Certain Scientific Railgun's Mikoto Misaka) as the character Athena Glory (seen right). Satou replaces the late Tomoko Kawakami from previous anime adaptations of Kozue Amano's Aria manga.

Iizuka added that Satou was cast on the recommendations of director Junichi Sato and original creator Kozue Amano, to portray a new drama between Athena, Alice, and the other characters. Iizuka assured fans that Kawakami remains "part of the Aria family," even as Satou joins the family. Kawakami was still credited for a "special performance" of Athena Glory in Aria the Avvenire in 2015, four years after Kawakami passed away in 2011.

The brand-new work will debut this winter to celebrate the television anime's 15th anniversary. The announcement did not reveal the work's format.

Right Stuf's Nozomi Entertainment label released the anime on DVD, and it describes the original 2005 Aria the Animation television anime:

Akari Mizunashi, at the age of 15, has left everything behind to travel to a sparkling planet covered in water, Aqua, formerly known as Mars. By the 24th century, humans have found a way to colonize the formerly uninhabitable planet.

More than anything, Akari wants to be an "undine" - a female gondolier who navigates the canals of the Aquan city of Neo-Venezia. The city itself is a faithful replication of Manhome's (Earth) city of Venice. To make sure that residents and tourists alike get the most from Neo-Venezia's many wonders, companies offering guided tours via gondola were formed, one of which is named Aria Company.

As she begins her training with the prestigious Aria Company, will she be up to the challenges that await her on the path to achieve her dream?

Hal Film Maker animated the 2005 television series Aria the Animation, and it later inspired two more television series — Aria the Natural in 2006 and Aria the Origination in 2008 — as well as original video anime (OVAs) — Aria the OVA ~Arietta~ in 2007 and Aria the Avvenire in 2015. Junichi Sato (Sailor Moon, Princess Tutu) directed all installments in the anime franchise.

Right Stuf licensed the three television series and the 2007 OVA in North America with English subtitles. Nozomi Entertainment ran a successful Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund all of the anime in the franchise in 2017, and it released the first Blu-ray Disc with the dub on March 3. ADV Manga released the first three of 12 total volumes of Kozue Amano's original Aria manga series in North America, then Tokyopop released the first six volumes. Tokyopop also released the two-volume Aqua prequel manga in North America.

Source: Aria anime's Twitter account


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