GKIDS Acquires Spirited Away: Live on Stage Film for Spring 2023 Release

spirited away live on stage feature image
©2022 Toho Co., Ltd.

GKIDS has announced that it has acquired the North American rights of Spirited Away: Live on Stage film. Two filmed performances of the stage production, featuring both of the show’s main cast members, will be released in theaters this coming spring.

spirited away live on stage film main poster
©2022 Toho Co., Ltd.

Spirited Away: Live on Stage is the first-ever stage play based on Hayao Miyazaki’s critically acclaimed film. The stage play was shot and performed at the Imperial Theatre in Tokyo, with Tony Award winner John Caird adapting and directing the production. Maoko Imai is assisting with co-adaptation of the stage play and Brad Haak is handling the musical orchestrations and arrangement, based on Joe Hisashi’s original musical score. 

The cast for the production is headlined by Kanna Hashimoto and Mone Kamishiraishi as protagonist Chihiro. Mari Natsuki, who voiced Yubaba and Zeniba in the original film, reprises her role for the stage play, with Romi Park also playing her role. Other cast members in the play include:

  • • Haku: Kotarou Daigo / Hiroki Miura
  • • No Face: Koharu Sugawara / Tomohiko Tsujimoto
  • • Lin/Chihiro’s Mother: Miyu Sakihi / Fuu Hinami
  • • Kamajî: Tomorowo Taguchi / Satoshi Hashimoto
  • • Aniyaku/Chihiro’s Father: Kenya Osumi
  • • Chichiyaku: Sunao Yoshimura
  • • Aogaeru: Obata no Oniisan

Miyazaki’s original anime film premiered in Japanese theaters on July 20, 2001 and was released by TOHO. An English dub released from Disney was later released in North America on September 20, 2002. It is currently the second highest grossing film in Japan, after Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train overtook it in 2020. 

GKIDS describes Spirited Away: Live on Stage as: 

Hayao Miyazaki’s Academy Award®-winning animated feature film comes to life in this first-ever stage adaptation, full of dazzling sets, captivating musical numbers, and wondrous puppets of beloved characters. Adapted and directed by Tony Award®-winner John Caird (Les Misérables), two unique casts and performances were filmed during the show’s acclaimed 2022 run at Tokyo’s historic Imperial Theatre, featuring Kanna Hashimoto and Mone Kamishiraishi as Chihiro.

For more information about the stage play film, please visit the official website for more details. 

Source: press release

William Moo is a freelance writer who has previously written for OTAQUEST and MANGA.TOKYO. He also contributes work to the website Yatta Tachi. He enjoys watching lots of anime every season and reading from time to time. You can follow him on Twitter @thewriterSITB.
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