Kodoani.com – Berlin distributor Capelight Pictures will screen the next live-action film based on the manga Whisper of the Heart (Mimi o Sumaseba) by Aoi Hiiragi in select theaters in New York and Los Angeles on Friday. The film will then be available on video on demand on June 20.
In the original film, Seiji expressed his desire to become an apprentice to a luthier in Cremona, Italy, one of the world’s most famous cities for luthiers of orchestral string instruments.
The live-action film was originally scheduled to open on September 18, 2020, but was delayed to October 14, 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The film stars Nana Seino (live-action Kyou Kara Ore Wa!!, After the Rain, Nowhere Girl, Tokyo Tribe, pictured above) as Shizuku Tsukishima and Tori Matsuzaka (Hello World, Himitsu – Top Secret , .hack //The Movie, Gatchaman, Kyō, Koi o Hajimemasu, Samurai Sentai Shinkenger, right) as Seiji Amasawa. Runa Yasuhara and Tsubasa Nakagawa played Shizuku and Seiji, respectively, when they were in middle school.
Yuki Yamada plays Tatsuya Sugimura, Shizuku’s childhood friend and baseball team member who has a crush on Shizuku. Rio Uchida plays Yūko Harada, Shizuku’s best friend who had a crush on Sugimura in middle school. Towa Araki and Sara Sumitomo play Sugimura and Yuuko when they were in middle school:
Yūichirō Hirakawa (live-action The Promised Neverland, ERASED / Boku dake ga Inai Machi, Waiting for Spring, Rookies, JIN projects) is directing the film, which is distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment and Shochiku. Anne Watanabe performed a cover of Michio Yamagami’s famous folk song “Tsubasa o Kudasai” as the film’s theme song.
The story of the new film is set 10 years after the story of the original manga. Now 24 years old, Shizuku has given up her dream of becoming a novelist, but still works hard every day to sell books as a children’s book editor at a publishing company. Meanwhile, Seiji is still pursuing his dream abroad, even as the distance between him and Shizuku grows wider.
The manga is inspired by an animated film by Yoshifumi Kondō and Studio Ghibli in 1995. The story follows high school bookworm Shizuku as she stumbles upon a mysterious antique shop, and the boy Seiji Amasawa, the shop owner’s nephew. A novice violin maker, Seiji also caught Shizuku’s attention when she noticed his name written on the payment cards of the books she borrowed from the library. Seiji’s passion for making violins inspired Shizuku to pursue her dream of writing a novel.
Hiiragi published the manga in Shueisha’s shoujo manga magazine Ribon in 1989. Hiiragi published a manga sequel titled Mimi o Sumaseba: Shiawase na Jikan in 1995, and a spin-off titled Baron : The Cat Returns in 2002. Viz Media published Baron: The Cat Returns in English. That manga was adapted for Studio Ghibli’s 2002 film The Cat Returns.