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GKIDS To Premiere Anime Film Blue Giant in North America this October
Based on the popular manga by Shinichi Ishizuka
GKIDS has disclosed its intentions to present the anime adaptation of Shinichi Ishizuka's manga, "Blue Giant," in handpicked North American theaters from October 8 to 9. The inaugural North American screening, slated for October 6 in New York and hosted by Japan Society, will include a special appearance by the film's composer, Hiromi Uehara. An English-subtitled trailer was also made available by GKIDS. The movie premiered in Japan on February 17, amassing a noteworthy 116,561,020 yen (roughly equivalent to US$867,600) in its initial three days. By April 9, it had impressively surpassed the one billion yen mark. Before its North American debut, the film offered a sneak preview screening during the June 2023 Annecy International Animation Film Festival.
Directed by Yuzuru Tachikawa, renowned for works such as "Death Parade," all three seasons of "Mob Psycho 100," and "Deca-Dence," the film was produced at studio NUT. The screenplay, conversely, was crafted by NUMBER 8, who serves as the editor of the "Blue Giant" manga and as the story director for its sequel, "Blue Giant Supreme." The distribution of the film falls under the purview of TOHO Animation.
The movie features an original musical score from the globally acclaimed pianist Hiromi Uehara, brought to life by the in-story jazz trio JASS. Uehara also lent her piano-playing talents to the character Yukinori Sawabe. At the same time, saxophonist Tomoaki Baba contributed his skills on the saxophone for the character Dai. Shun Ishiwaka, the drummer of the Millennium Parade band, assumed the role of playing the drums for Shunji Tamada.
Seven Seas Entertainment is releasing Shinichi Ishizuka's 10-volume "Blue Giant" manga series in five omnibus volumes for readers eager to delve into the source material. The manga chronicles the transformation of Miyamoto Dai, a basketball enthusiast when a live jazz performance profoundly moves him. This musical encounter sparked a profound passion within him, compelling him to pursue the saxophone despite his lack of formal training and skills. The story delves into whether Dai's unwavering ardor will suffice to fulfill his dreams as a musician.
Shinichi Ishizuka initially launched the manga in Big Comic in May 2013, bringing it to a close in August 2016. The manga received nominations for the eighth and ninth Manga Taisho Awards in 2015 and 2016, respectively, ultimately securing the Grand Prize in the Manga Division at the 20th Japan Media Arts Festival Awards in 2017.
Following the triumph of "Blue Giant," Ishizuka introduced the sequel manga, "Blue Giant Supreme," which was serialized in Big Comic from September 2016 to April 2020, spanning ten volumes. Additionally, Ishizuka embarked on a fresh sequel manga titled "Blue Giant Explorer," which premiered in Big Comic in May 2020. The "Blue Giant" manga series has achieved a remarkable total circulation of 10 million copies.