Studio Ponoc has released a new trailer for its upcoming anime fantasy film “Mary and the Witch’s Flower.” Directed by Ponoc’s co-founder Hiromasa Yonebayashi, the film marks the Japanese studio’s inaugural production, following its opening in April 2015. Yonebayashi founded Ponoc with producer Yoshiaki Nishimura, former staffers at Ghibli, the studio behind anime classics such as “Spirited Away” (2001) and “My Neighbor Toronto” (1988), which closed in 2014.
“Mary and the Witch’s Flower” is based on Mary Stewart’s 1971 children’s book “The Little Broomstick,” with a screenplay by Riko Sakaguchi (“The Tale of the Princess Kaguya”). It follows the story of a little girl who, after being sent to her great aunt’s house, gains magical powers but only for one night.
As reported by UK’s The Telegraph in December, Nishimura says that the film is for children who are “moving into the 21st century… I think we all had a vision of what the world would be like, but it’s not the one we’re moving into. So what filmmakers should say at a time when people are losing hope – and what kind of film might help restore it in our children – are big themes for right now.” This is Yonebayashi’s third film, following Ghibli’s “When Marnie Was There” and “The Secret World of Arrietty.”
“Mary and the Witch’s Flower” premieres in the summer in Japan. Watch the new trailer below.