On 5th March 2015, Studio Ghibli announced the English language voice cast for its latest film, “When Marie Was There” (思い出のマーニー). Ever since then, we’ve been super excited at the prospect of watching it.
You see, “When Marnie Was There” was released in Japan last year and at that time, Studio Ghibli said that they weren’t sure if they’d make another feature-length movie at all.
Long-time producer Toshio Suzuki said after the film’s Japanese release:
We’re changing the way we make (animation). We wanted to make a dream company. We thought we would make what suited us and not make what didn’t suit us. We were able to realize (that dream) to some extent and we’re very happy about that. But now we’re at a point where we’ve got to think about what we’ll do next.
Needless to say, initially, the news broke our little hearts as we’ve previously seen great legendary animation works from Studio Ghibli including “My Neighbour Totoro” and “Spirited Away”, just to name a few.
But now, we have something to look forward to, since there will be a US localisation of the feature!
“When Marnie Was There” is written and directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi (of “The Secret World of Arrietty” fame), based on a children’s novel by Joan G. Robinson. A young girl named Anna makes her first real friend in the form of a mysterious girl named Marnie, who is connected to a forbidding, seemingly abandoned house.
The film’s plot is as follows:
Sent from her foster home in the city one summer to a sleepy town by the sea in Hokkaido, Anna dreams her days away among the marshes. She believes she’s outside the invisible magic circle to which most people belong – and shuts herself off from everyone around her, wearing her “ordinary face”. Anna never expected to meet a friend like Marnie, who does not judge Anna for being just what she is. But no sooner has Anna learned the loveliness of friendship than she begins to wonder about her newfound friend…ADVERTISEMENT
For the US localisation, the English language voice cast includes Hailee Steinfeld as Anna and Kiernan Shipka as Marnie, as well as Kathy Bates, Ellen Burstyn, Geena Davis, Catherine O’Hara, John C. Reilly, Raini Rodriguez, and Vanessa Williams.
Watch the official US trailer here:
“When Marnie Was There” will open in Los Angeles and New York on 22nd May before expanding elsewhere.
Fingers crossed that it’ll come to Malaysian cinemas too because this might be our last chance to see a Studio Ghibli feature film.