Magic Tree House (film)
|Magic Tree House|
Film poster advertising Magic Tree House in Japan
|Directed by||Hiroshi Nishikiori|
|Produced by||Hiroyuki Harada
|Screenplay by||Ichiro Okouchi|
|Based on||Mary Pope Osborne (Magic Tree House series)|
|Music by||Akira Senju|
|Editing by||Shigeru Nishiyama|
|Distributed by||Gaga Communications|
|Running time||105 minutes|
Magic Tree House (マジック・ツリーハウス) is a 2011 Japanese anime drama film based on the American children fantasy series of the same name. The film is directed by Hiroshi Nishikiori, and the film's screenplay was adapted from the Japanese version of the novel series Magic Tree House by Ichiro Okouchi. The film stars actress Keiko Kitagawa as Jack, and also stars child actress Mana Ashida as Annie.
Jack is a shy but confident bookworm and his sister Annie can make friends quickly with both humans and animals. One day, while they were playing together in a forest, they unexpectedly stumble upon a wooden treehouse located in this forest. This magical treehouse allows people to travel across time and space whenever they liked. From the trailers the following books are used as influences and go under the spell Morgan le Fay was under in books 5-8 but actually use books 1, 2, 4, and 13.
It was revealed by publisher Media Factory that the English children fantasy series Magic Tree House will be adapted into an anime film on November 2010. Subsequently, in the 6 March 2011 issue of the Asahi Shimbun newspaper, an advertisement announced that the film will be released in Japanese cinemas in 2012. This children fantasy series sold more than 3.3 million copies in Japan, and 92 million copies in 33 different countries worldwide. This is the first animated film adaptation of the fantasy series.
A press conference that was held on 9 July 2011 by Gaga Communications, a Japanese film distributor, announced that the film will be released in Japan on 7 January 2012. The film is based on the Japanese version of the franchise that was illustrated by Ayana Amako, and the screenplay is adapted by screenwriter Ichiro Ookochi. Art director Toshiharu Mizutani, whose previous works includes the anime films Piano no Mori (2007) and Akira (1988), will be in charge of the art in this film. The music in this film will be composed by Akira Senju, who had previously composed theme songs for the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime series.
The voice cast for the film Magic Tree House was announced on 8 August 2011. Actress Keiko Kitagawa will voice Jack, while child actress Mana Ashida will be the voice of Annie, Jack's sister. This will be Kitagawa's first voice acting role, though she had previously starred as the lead character in other films like Paradise Kiss (2011) and Hana no Ato (2010). Kitagawa described this role as "challenging", and she added that she "wanted to express the freshness of the voice of [Jack] as much as possible.". Mana Ashida, an avid reader who is a big fan of the original book series, said that she was "highly motivated" to play the role of Annie in this film. She said that she "enjoyed the adventure as much as Annie", to the extent that she felt that "she was flying into the book to be with Annie.". Mana Ashida has previously had voiced Agnes in the Japanese version of the 2010 film Despicable Me.
Ashida and Kitagawa had previously worked together in the 2011 television drama special Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni that was aired on 5 August 2011 on the Nippon Television network. Kitagawa described Ashida as "a professional child actress", while Ashida said that "Kitagwa-san is very kind and friendly".
Magic Tree House made its debut at the 24th Tokyo International Film Festival on 23 October 2011. It was featured as one of the festival's special screenings. The film was released in Japanese cinemas on 7 January 2012, and was also featured at a release ceremony at Shinjuku Piccadilly that day.
The DVD, Blu-ray & Limited Edition of the movie were released on August 3, 2012.
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