GKIDS, the acclaimed producer and distributor of animation for adult and family audiences, announced today it has acquired all North American distribution rights for the stylish ode to filmmaking, Pompo the Cinephile (Eiga Daisuki Pompo-san). Known for his dynamic, maximalist animation sequences, Director Takayuki Hirao (God Eater, The Garden of Sinners) returns to the director’s chair with production from the all-new studio CLAP.
An official selection at the 2021 Fantasia Film Festival, Pompo the Cinephile was domestically released on June 4, 2021, and has remained an indie hit, playing for 15 weeks and counting, with a current box office of ¥200,000,000 (approx. $1.8 million USD) to date. Fueled by the excitement from the film’s domestic release, a crowdfunding campaign to create a 35mm print of the feature achieved its fundraising goals of ¥10,000,000 (approx. $91,000 USD) in just 11 days.
“Pompo the Cinephile is a completely charming and original work,” said GKIDS President David Jesteadt. “Both hilarious and earnest, its contemplation of what it takes to pursue an artistic vision is an inspiration for these times. I cannot wait to share the experience with audiences in theaters early next year.”
GKIDS will release Pompo the Cinephile theatrically in both its original Japanese language and an all-new English dubbed version early next year. The all-rights North American distribution deal was negotiated between GKIDS and AVEX Pictures Inc., who handle international sales.
Synopsis: Pompo is a talented and gutsy producer in “Nyallywood,” the movie-making capital of the world. Although she’s known for B-movies, one day Pompo tells her movie-loving but apprehensive assistant Gene that he will direct her next script: a delicate drama about an aging and tormented creative genius, starring the legendary and Brando-esque actor Martin Braddock, and a young actress seeking her first break. But when the production heads towards chaos, can Gene rise to Pompo’s challenge, and succeed as a first-time director?
Pompo the Cinephile is a rollicking, exuberant ode to the power of the movies, and the joys and heartbreak of the creative process, as a new director and his team devote their lives to the pursuit of a “masterpiece.”
Alongside director Hirao, the movie’s key creative team includes art directors Takafumi Nishima (Accel World, E’s Otherwise) and Miu Miyamoto (The Island of Giant Insects, Deji Meets Girl), and character designer Shingo Adachi (Sword Art Online, Rockman.EXE).
The Japanese voice cast features Hiroya Shimizu (The Outsider), Konomi Kohara (Hanako in Demon Slayer: Mugen Train, Chika in Kaguya-sama: Love Is War), Ai Kakuma (Machi in Fruits Basket, Rabirin in Healin’ Good PreCure), Akio Otsuka (Ghost in the Shell, Howl’s Moving Castle, Paprika) and Rinka Ōtani.