Anime is a term generally used to refer to Japanese style animated TV shows or films,although the term can be widely used to refer to any sort of animation, including even Disney.
Popular anime titles include Bleach and Naruto and films by Studio Ghibli, such as Spirited Away and My Neighbour Totoro. Japanese Anime, as a genre, bears many similarities to American animation, However, although both are often aimed at children, anime often includes more serious messages, such as environmental issues and ideas perceived by some to be highly philosophical, and sometimes just downright weird concepts, such as a teenage girl being abducted to ‘cat world’ where she must escape from a forced marriage to a cat prince, a plot seen in ‘The Cat Returns’.
Currently a source of much excitement for anime fans is the up and coming release of ‘The Secret World of Arrietty’ - the latest collaboration between Japan’s Studio Ghibli and America’s Disney.
Due to the cultural differences films produced in a combined effort between these two companies are always guaranteed to be filled with entertaining characters and plot lines. ‘The Secret World of Arrietty’ is based on the novel ‘The Borrowers’ by Mary Norton – an English author which could cause the film to showcase a large range of cultural concepts, considering the three varied nationalities involved. The main storyline revolves around the lives of the Clock family: 4in tall people who secretly live in another family’s house, however tumultuous and life-changing events occur when their daughter Arrietty is discovered.
The official trailer has already been released and can be viewed here: http://www.onlineghibli.com/ and the entirety of the film is set to be released in English by Disney on February 17th 2012, although it has already been released in Japan.
A remake of the live action Death Note film is also set to be released shortly, with rumours spreading that Zac Efron will be cast as the main character Light Yagami – a casting choice which many Death Note fans are speculative of, as some find it difficult to imagine the former High School Musical star playing a homicidal maniac/ genius. This version will be directed by Shane Black and produced by Warner Bros, being based solely on the manga version, ignoring both the Japanese anime and live action film.
Other current casting rumours concern the production of the live action version of Akira- the 1998 cyberpunk science fiction anime film which depicts a dystopian Neo- Tokyo. Gary Oldman – from the Dark Knight Trilogy, has been offered the role of the colonel, but has said that he is unsure whether he will accept it, although he said he thought the script was ‘interesting’.
Another controversial role is seen in this live action remake, as the possibility of Kristen Stewart – Twilight’s Bella, playing the female lead Kei. She is currently in ‘advanced talks’ with Warner Bros. Kristen Stewart is a controversial actor in herself; with many ‘Twilight’ fans going crazy over the actress, and others, perhaps those more rational, being less than impressed by her supposedly wooden acting and apparently emotionless demeanour.