Limited Edition showings are far from anything new. But 2016 has really been a major year for the trend. Despite only having a matter of days left in 2016, looking ahead into the New Year it looks as if these special showings are only becoming more and more commonplace.
And is it ever grand.
If you might recall. We have been covering the various Studio Ghibli films that have made their way back to the silver screen for such grand affairs. The iconic “Spirited Away” aired in early December. Following the same patter, “Princess Mononoke” is slated to have a theatrical run in early January.
In both articles I mused what might be the next film ready to return to audiences on the big screen. Once more the answer to that question did not take long to answer. As the next Studio Ghibli film has already been announced.
But this time the title might not ring out as so familiar. For the first time “Ocean Waves” arrives before North American fans.
According to the press release, Studio Ghibli’s Ocean Waves — never released in the US, is participating in an exclusive limited run theater release. This entails an all new 4K restoration of the 1993 TV movie will play starting December 28 at IFC Center in New York, and for one night only at the Egyptian Theatre in LA. A home video release will follow in Spring 2017.
Rarely seen outside of Japan, Ocean Waves is a subtle, poignant and wonderfully detailed story of adolescence and teenage isolation. Taku and his best friend Yutaka are headed back to school for what looks like another uneventful year. But they soon find their friendship tested by the arrival of Rikako, a beautiful new transfer student from Tokyo whose attitude vacillates wildly from flirty and flippant to melancholic. When Taku joins Rikako on a trip to Tokyo, the school erupts with rumors, and the three friends are forced to come to terms with their changing relationships.
Ocean Waves was directed by Tomomi Mochizuki (Ranma ½, Maison Ikkoku) and written by Kaori Nakamura. The film is an animated adaptation of Saeko Himuro’s novel of the same name.
A full list of participating theaters nationwide is available here.
There are two big things worth pointing out here.
First the fact that unlike the previous films, “Ocean Waves” release is not a collaborative effort with Fathom Events. But rather done completely by GKIDS themselves. The mass link for tickets is on the link provided in the official details. And “Ocean Waves” is not listed at all on Fathom’s web-site.
The other; the home media release is slated for spring in the upcoming year. After the showings.
As I have said before I am glad that we are seeing this happen more. I love anime so these kinds of articles always fill me with delight to write as it means great stories and become more and more widespread. The fact that the third film from the studio getting this treatment is one that has never been released in America or Canada is major and utterly fantastic.
I cannot state enough how great this really is and how much I hope these head-lines become more frequent.
Join the conversation: Are you planning on heading to any of the Studio Ghibli film’s theatrical releases?