Here’s some great news for both anime and Ponoc Studio fans: GKIDs is joining forces with Fathom Events to release the new Studio Ponoc anthology package Modest Heroes, Vol. 1. The anthology, which features three shorts will arrive in 400 U.S. theaters on January 10 at 7 p.m. (English language) and Saturday, Jan. 12 at 12:55 p.m. (Japanese with English subtitles).
Modest Heroes is the studio’s follow-up to last year’s cclaimed animated feature Mary and The Witch’s Flower. There anthology features Kanini & Kanino, Life Ain’t Gonna Lose and Invisible. Kanini & Kanino is directed by Academy Award®-nominee Hiromasa Yonebayashi (When Marnie Was There, Mary and The Witch’s Flower); Life Ain’t Gonna Lose, featuring the voice of Maggie Q (Nikita, Designated Survivor), is helmed by Yoshiyuki Momose, who was a key animator on Isao Takahata’s films at Studio Ghibli; and Invisible director Akihiko Yamashita was a key animator on many of Studio Ghibli and Hayao Miyazaki’s best-known films.
The three projects are produced by Studio Ponoc’s founder and producer Yoshiaka Nishimura. Together, the stories explore ideas of heroism large and small, and the infinite potential of the short film format allows the directors and Studio Ponoc to experiment with breathtaking, action-packed visuals, concise human drama and gorgeous fantasy worlds, in an unforgettable anthology that is further demonstration of the studio’s exciting future.
“Studio Ponoc is delighted to partner once again with GKIDS and Fathom Events to bring our Modest Heroes to fans and new audiences in the United States,” said Studio Ponoc founder and producer Yoshiaki Nishimura.
- InKanini & Kanino, directed by Academy Award®-nominee Hiromasa Yonebayashi (When Marnie Was There, Mary and The Witch’s Flower), two crab brothers embark on a grand underwater adventure to find their father, after an accident carries him far downstream. Depicted as tiny beings in a large and merciless natural world, the brothers must evade a series of freshwater predators if they are ever to reunite with their family again.
- Life Ain’t Gonna Lose is directed by caclaimed animator Yoshiyuki Momose (key animator on Isao Takahata’s films at Studio Ghibli, and animation director of the video game “Ni No Kuni”). The story centers on an eight-year-old Shun who loves baseball running. With the love of his strong-willed mother (Maggie Q), Shun faces the challenge of an everyday life threatened by a deadly allergy.
- Lastly, in Invisible(the directing debut of Akihiko Yamashita, a talented key animator on many of Studio Ghibli and Hayao Miyazaki’s best-known films) a man wakes up one morning and goes through his day in a world where no one can see him. But just when he seems to have reached his limit, a momentous decision gives him the chance to reclaim his humanity.
“Along with our friends at GKIDS, we brought some of the finest and best-loved Japanese animation to American shores in 2018,” Fathom Events CEO Ray Nutt said. “We are proud to once again partner with GKIDS to kick off 2019 with this wonderful anthology.”
You can watch the new trailer here:
For more info, visit the Fathom Events site here.