In July, former producers and animators from the legendary Studio Ghibli, released their first anime film under the new production company Studio Ponoc. Mary and The Witch’s Flower was met with wide acclaim and a strong box office performance in Japan. Now, this winter, Mary and The Witch’s Flower, from Oscar-nominated director Hiromasa Yonebayashi (When Marnie Was There) will be shown in theaters across the United States.
On Tuesday, GKIDS, the distributor behind award-winning and nominated animated films like 2010’s A Cat in Paris and 2015’s The Tale of Princess Kaguya, announced it had acquired the U.S. distribution rights to Mary and The Witch’s Flower for a theatrical release this winter. The release is a continuation of GKIDS’s partnership with Studio Ponoc, an animation studio spearheaded by former Studio Ghibli producer Yoshiaki Nishimura. Mary and The Witch’s Flower is the first film from Studio Ponoc since its creation in 2015.
Based on Mary Stewart’s 1971 novel The Little Broomstick, Mary and The Witch’s Flower follows the adventure of a girl named Mary who comes across a mysterious flower that grants her the powers of a witch for one night only. The film is the second directorial effort by Yonebayashi, whose previous film When Marnie Was There, also based on a 20th century British novel from Joan G. Robinson, was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 88th Academy Awards. (It lost to Disney’s Inside Out.)
There are no official release dates for Mary and The Witch’s Flower yet.