'Chibi Maruko-chan' to get 3D animated movie in China

By Zhang Rui
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, February 1, 2021
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A teaser poster of "Chibi Maruko-chan: The Fantastic Notebook." [Photo courtesy of Sublime Media]

One of the iconic Japanese animated shojo manga series, "Chibi Maruko-chan," will be made into a 3D animated feature in China.

Renowned female Chinese director Xue Xiaolu will direct "Chibi Maruko-chan: The Fantastic Notebook", which is set to release during the 2022 Spring Festival holiday. A teaser poster was released on Jan. 29. 

"In China, the anime is part of the childhood memory of many people. I personally loved the cute, sincere, and kind character who loves dreaming," Xue said. She is known for making romantic blockbusters such as "Finding Mr. Right" and "Book of Love," as well as the suspense thriller "The Whistleblower."

Xue added that the new movie will add fantasy and adventure elements to the original anime series. "As we are going to maintain a continuation of the classic, I hope my team can also bring along fresh contents that can touch your hearts."

"Chibi Maruko-chan" by Momoko Sakura has been a very popular manga and anime series among Chinese for generations. Chinese film company Guangdong Sublime Media will produce the new movie and Sakura's studio Sakura Production will act as executive producer and oversee the production. 

The manga's creator Momoko Sakura died from breast cancer at the age of 53 in August 2018. She serialized the manga in Shueisha's Ribon magazine from 1986 to 1996. The comedy manga, which follows the everyday life of a third-grade schoolgirl, has so far seen about 32 million copies in print. 

The original Chibi Maruko-chan manga inspired a television anime produced by Nippon Animation and aired on Fuji Television. It has been almost consistently the third most rated television anime series after "Sazae-san" and "Detective Conan" for more than two decades.

Sakura Production said in a statement that, in the film, Maruko will jump out of her everyday life into a new adventure world full of fantasy. "We delightedly expect everyone to enjoy the charming world of Maruko and the unique new development of her story in the movie.

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