Saudi Arabia’s company Manga Productions and Japanese major Toei Animations have joined hands for a bi-cultural anime film which is titled ‘The Journey’. The first-ever Saudi-Japanese anime film is a pioneering collaboration that will pave the way for anime fans and film buffs to witness the rich history of Middle East Asia. The film is going to be released on June 25th this year. Toei Animations has dropped a new trailer for the same, you can check it out here.
“The video will be featured in the region and worldwide to export our Saudi culture and historical stories from Arabian Peninsula. This will be the first of a number of videos that will be produced by Manga Productions and will be featured in cinemas in the Middle East and the world. It is an example of the results of empowering Saudi talents and artists, and investing in their talents”. Dr. Essam Bukhari, CEO of Manga Production stated this in one of his interviews with Arab News.
He added, “Young Saudi men and women were sent to be trained at Toei Animations studio [in Japan] and were recruited by Manga Productions to work on this film that is the result of Saudi creative content production in cooperation with international partners at the highest level.”
The Journey is a tribute to the ancient civilization of the Arabian Peninsula and follows a potter named Aws, 1500 years back who fought for his homeland in order to defend it from destruction.
The story is co-created by the staff member from both Toei Animations and the Saudi Arabian production houses. Kobun Shizuno, the mind behind Godzilla: City on the Edge of Battle and Detective Conan, took the reigns of the direction of the film. The script is the end product of Atsuhiro Tomioka’s (One Piece: Stampede) creative writing. Toei Animations had not only co-produced the piece with Manga Productions but its subsidiary T-Joy company will distribute the film in Japan. As for MENA and western audiences, VOX Cinema will do the job.
Another main highlight of this collaboration is the use of 4DX technology. It involves enhancing the viewer’s experiences by stimulating effects and condition going on screen. Hence, providing a multi-sensory experience.
The Arabic version will feature several famous Arab celebs including Rasha Rizk (Detective Conan and Digimon Series) and others. As for the Japanese version, The Journey stars Toru Furuya (Mobile Suit Gundam), Kotono Mitsuishi (Neon Genesis Evangelion), Hiroshi Kamiya (Attack on Titan), Yuichi Nakamura (Jujutsu Kaisen), Kazuya Nakai (Gintama), and Takaya Kuroda (Durarara!!). This film holds the key to a much diverse spectrum for the anime community.