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Miyazaki’s ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Coming to U.K. Theaters

Elysian Film Group, Anonymous Content, and Bleecker Street have acquired the film’s distribution rights, with a planned cinema release later this year.

Elysian Film Group, Anonymous Content and Bleecker Street have joined forces to acquire the U.K. rights for animator Hayao Miyazaki’s (reportedly) last film, The Boy and the Heron, according to Variety. While the rights are being held equally, Elysian Film Group will release the film. This will be Bleecker Street’s first direct investment in U.K. distribution, as well as its first animated film. GKIDS recently acquired the North American rights for Heron.

The companies jointly commented, “Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli are second-to-none as artists and innovators, and we could not be more proud to bring this beautiful, emotional film to audiences across the U.K.”

Released in Japan as Kimitachi wa Do Ikiruka (translated as How Do You Live), the hand-drawn, animated feature – director Miyazaki’s first feature film in 10 years – opened exclusively in Japanese cinemas earlier this year. It is produced by the Oscar-winning Studio Ghibli co-founder Toshio Suzuki and features a musical score from Miyazaki’s long-time collaborator Joe Hisaishi.

An original story, Heron is set in World War II and follows a boy grieving for his deceased mother while his father quickly remarries his mother’s sister. As a teaser had previously described, “A young boy named Mahito yearning for his mother ventures into a world shared by the living and the dead. There, death comes to an end, and life finds a new beginning. A semi-autobiographical fantasy about life, death, and creation, in tribute to friendship, from the mind of Hayao Miyazaki.”

The Boy and the Heron will release theatrically both in the U.K. and North America later this year.

Laurén Alexa's picture

Cybersecurity specialist by day, investigative journalist by night.