‘Saint Seiya’ returns in CG anime film

Translated by The Asahi Shimbun from the website of Anime Anime Japan Ltd. 

Toei Animation Co. plans to remake the manga “Saint Seiya” by Masami Kurumada in CG anime to celebrate the manga’s 25th anniversary in 2011.

Dubbed the “Kurumada Masami Project,” Toei Animation is emphasizing the “back-to-basics fun” of the original manga. It will cater to not only existing “Seiya” fans, but also children who have yet to become familiar with the title.

Making full use of the latest CG technology, the film is expected to feature high-quality, dynamic imagery updated for the 2010s.

To push the launch, Toei Animation has set up a website with a promo video showing a computer-generated character who appears to be Seiya.

Details on the date for theater release, the cast and the production crew will be announced later.

“Saint Seiya” is one of Kurumada’s major titles. It was first published in Shueisha Inc.’s weekly Shonen Jump comic magazine in 1985 and was an instant hit.

After spawning an animated TV series the following year, “Saint Seiya” was produced in various film, television and direct-to-video adaptations. The anime is also one of the studio’s major projects.

The sci-fi action story features a group of young warriors dressed in sacred armor known as “cloths.” The title was greatly popular among boys and girls, and still boasts legions of fans.

“Saint Seiya” also found popularity outside Japan, especially in Europe and Latin America. The new feature film will likely find fans at home and abroad.

At the Tokyo International Anime Fair in spring 2010, Toei Animation unveiled a pilot video of a CG adaptation of Leiji Matsumoto’s 1970s series, “Space Pirate Captain Harlock.”

“Saint Seiya” seems to be following suit with this move to make CG adaptations of anime titles that were popular in past decades.

The project demonstrates Toei Animation’s efforts to shift to computer-generated animation, keeping in step with the times as CG animation moves into the mainstream.

It seems likely we’ll see more CG adaptations of classic anime aimed at the global market in the future.

See (http://www.toei-anim.co.jp/movie/seiya_cg/).

Copyright The Asahi Shimbun Company.