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Indie distributor GKIDS has acquired the North American distribution rights for the animated feature Napping Princess, a sci-fi fantasy written and directed by Kenji Kamiyama, the director of East of Eden and Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex.
GKIDS will release the film theatrically on Sept. 8 at Village East Cinema in New York and at Laemmle Monica Film Center in Los Angeles, with a national expansion to follow, qualifying it for Academy Awards consideration.
Set in 2020, just days before the Tokyo Olympics begins, Napping Princess follows the journey of a young girl, Kokone, and her friend Morio as they set out to find Kokone’s missing father, a mysterious mechanic kidnapped for stealing technology from a powerful corporation. Kokone must tap into a world only accessible through her dreams in order to solve the mystery.
The film, formerly known as Ancien and the Magic Tablet, was an official selection at this year’s Annecy International Animated Film Festival, as well as the Fantasia Film Festival, where it won the audience award for best animated feature award. It will be released in both its original Japanese language and a new English dubbed version.
“We fell in love with Kenji Kamiyama’s unique vision in Napping Princess,” said David Jesteadt, president of GKIDS. “His blend of near-future science-fiction, family drama, and detective story results in a high-octane, thought-provoking adventure that all ages can enjoy.”
Since 2010, GKIDS has earned nine Oscar nominations for best animated feature. Its upcoming releases include The Breadwinner, Birdboy: The Forgotten Children, Mary and the Witch’s Flower and The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales.
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