Fans of “Naruto” be rejoicing right about now because although the popular manga officially ended in November 2014, there might be something else to keep your fandom well and alive!
Naruto (ナルト) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Masashi Kishimoto. It tells the story of Naruto Uzumaki, an adolescent ninja who constantly searches for recognition and dreams to become the Hokage, the ninja in his village who is acknowledged as the leader and the strongest of all. The series is based on a one-shot manga by Kishimoto that was published in the August 1997 issue of Akamaru Jump.
As of September 2014, the manga has over 200 million copies in print, with over 130 million copies in Japan and the remaining 75 million being overseas, making it the third best-selling manga series in history. The manga is also available in 35 countries outside Japan.
After the manga ended in November 2014, Naruto also had its last film titled, “The Last -Naruto the Movie-“, and it has been playing in Japan theatres since 6th December 2014. If that’s a little out of reach for you, fret not, because we hear that there’ll be a Naruto musical/play dubbed, “Live Spectacle Naruto“!
According to Kotaku, “Live Spectacle Naruto” is slated to begin its run in March 2015 in Tokyo.The musical is part of the Naruto Shin Jidai Kaimaku Project (Naruto’s New Era Opening Project). There will also be performances in Tokyo, Fukuoka, and Miyagi as well as international performances in Singapore, Malaysia, and Macau. Yes, you read right – Malaysia.
The cast members of “Live Spectable Naruto” are as follows:
- Ryuuji Satou as Sasuke Uchiha
- Yui Itou as Sakura Haruno
- Kenta Suga as Gaara
- Yuuki Kimisawa as Kakashi Hatake
- Kazuhiro Hirakawa as the Third Hokage
- Hidekazu Ichinose as Iruka
- Tatsunari Kimura as Kabuto
- Asahi Uchida as Zabuza Momochi
- Miho Imamura as Haku
The musical will be directed by Akiko Kodama and Toshio Masuda will compose the music at Nelke Planning. The musical will cover volumes 1 – 27 of the manga through songs, dance, and acrobatics.
Character stills of the main cast Naruto, Sasuke, Sakura, and Gaara in full costume has also been revealed! Check ’em out:
The other characters who were confirmed to be featured in the play include Hinata, Jiraiya, Orochimaru, Kiba, Shino, Shikamaru, Ino, and Chouji.
The play will be held over at the AiiA theater in Tokyo from 21st March – 5th April before heading to Fukuoka from 10th – 12th April, Osaka from 17th – 19th April. Miyagi from 23rd – 25th April, and then it returns to Tokyo from 19th April – 10th May.
UPDATE (8am, 7th Feb):
We got word that local organiser JS Concert Productions will be the ones bringing the “Live Spectacle Naruto” aka the Naruto musical to Malaysia! They recently made the announcement on their Facebook page – just a teaser and nothing else as of yet. In case you missed it, here it is:
No exact dates or venues have been announced for the Singapore, Malaysia, and Macau performances as of yet but keep checking back with us as we’ll be updating this post with more details as soon as we know!
It won’t be long now ;)