New Mamoru Hosoda anime: BELLE

Looking forward to this one:

looking forward for this, it looks like there will be interesting visuals and design

the story, not much interest there… think “the belle and the beast” has a dumb idea

I couldn’t yet watch Mirai no Mirai… no legal way to do so here in Brazil, alas. :(

A little bit of Paprika vibes, maybe?

Probably more coherent though, since, well, it’s hard to be less coherent than Paprika.

Haha, yeah.

Man, we lost Satoshi Kon too soon.

Nah, Cocteau’s and Disney’s versions are among my favorite films.

There’s room for a great movie here.

But except got the Boy and the Beast there’s no Hosoda movie I don’t love.

No Wolf Children (due to the slightly psychedelic ending) but close. Seen it three times!

I’m curious the extent to which this is really going to be a Beauty and the Beast story, because I see elements of the lines between real + virtual worlds and idol/stardom culture, which are extremely Satoshi Kon themes.

I don’t think this is Beauty and the Beast.

Rather it’s a youthful main character escapes to online world where her avatar sings and has to combat something. Like Summer Wars except for the singing. Trailer song is haunting, reminds me of Macross Plus Sharon Apple or Origa from Ghost in the Shell SAC Opening. Gives me the chills.

From YouTube comments:

*Fun facts: this film will be a collaborative effort between Studio Chizu and Cartoon Saloon, the Irish studio behind Song of the Sea, Secret of Kells and Wolfwalkers. They are also recruiting Jin Kim, a Disney animator, for the character design for the titular character Belle (the pink-haired lady). *

Note that the character designer for her virtual self is the one who designed the characters for frozen

STORY
Suzu, is a 17-year old high school girl, who lives in the countryside of Kochi Prefecture with her father, after losing her mother at a young age.
She loves singing with her mother more than anything else, but as a result of her mother’s death was no longer able to sing.
It wasn’t long before she and her father grew more and more distant from each other, and Suzu closed her heart to the rest of the world.
When Suzu felt that writing music was her only purpose left in life, she then discovers the massive online space known as “U,” where she takes on her persona, Belle.

Another me.
Another reality.
We are no longer limited to a single world.

Suzu quickly realizes that when she is inside “U” as her avatar, Belle, she can sing quite naturally. As she continues to showcase her own music in the virtual world, she fast becomes the rising star of “U.”
Nonetheless, that surprise is short-lived. Suddenly, a mysterious dragon-shaped creature appears before her…

Mmmm… maybe. But everything they’ve shown points to a love story between belle and the dragon-like creature.

Anyway, Hosoda’s features tend to be multi-layered, so it’s not going to be a straight retelling even if there’s inspiration there.

No release date here yet. Hopefully it will get a big screen release like the latest high-profile anime films have gotten.

Watched this, was sumptuous and bittersweet. Sharon Apple vibes if you’ve seen Macross Plus.

The opening 3 min

For the first time the English VA Kylie McNeil and her singing is as fantastic as the Japanese original actor.

The soundtrack is a real banger too

Yes I liked it a lot too. A step below Mirai and Wolf Children for me, but pretty great nonetheless.

One layer of it is indeed a Beauty and the Beast reinterpretation. It even directly quotes Disney’s version.

It’s a homage to the Disney flick specifically as he saw it when he graduated.