Studio Ponoc’s debut animated film Mary and The Witch’s Flower promises high with Studio Ghibli marks all over. The first English language trailer of the film released recently shows glimpses of Ghibli magic that we have experienced over the years.
Based on British author Mary Stewart’s 1971 children’s book The Little Broomstick, Mary and The Witch’s Flower is the creation of two Ghibli alumnus: producer Yoshiaki Nishimura and director Hiromasa Yonebayashi, who together founded Studio Ponoc.
The film is already released in Japan last July but the English language trailer has created a lot of buzz among animated movie lovers who find this very much as a Ghibli production. Other than the visual style and storytelling practice, Mary and The Witch’s Flower also somehow resembles Hayao Miyazaki directed Kiki’s Delivery Service that also tells the story of a broom-riding little girl.
Both the director and producer have long experience in Studio Ghibli production, who also worked together in Oscar-nominated Ghibli film When Marnie Was There (2015). Therefore, it is no surprise that they would bring similar sensibilities in storytelling.
Watch the movie trailer for Mary and The Witch’s Flower
The film follows the titular character Mary who discovers a strange blooming flower that holds magical power which brings a broomstick to life. The stick then whisks her away over the clouds to a strange and secret place where she finds a school of magic.
As Mary enters the magic school, despite having no knowledge on magic she demonstrates promising abilities. She, however, discovers that all is not well in the school as there have been strange experiments taking place behind closed doors. She now has to come face to face with some great challenges and a life-changing choice.
Mary and the Witch’s Flower is hitting theatres on January 18, 2018!