Director Makoto Shinkai Adapts His Biggest Hit The Garden of Words into a Novel Himself!

© Makoto Shinkai / CoMix Wave Films

Through his vivid visuals and stories that enter the hearts of viewers, Makoto Shinkai has heavily influenced young people both in Japan and abroad. This next-generation director worked with a new crew to release the animated theatrical film The Garden of Words in 2013.

Praised as his masterpiece, this vibrant yet woeful drama tells a story of the solitude right before love. As the “first ‘love story’” set in contemporary Tokyo, the film enjoyed a long run and became the director’s biggest hit. The film was released on iTunes at the same time as the theatrical release and was chosen as best animated film in iTunes’ Best of 2013 out of numerous animated films.

Makoto Shinkai has taken it upon himself to write the novel adaptation of The Garden of Words, which has received overwhelming support. The director’s visual work, which has the thematic and stylistic aspects of novels, has already been called “visual literature of the digital age,” but the book includes new scenes and character perspectives unable to be shown on film, allowing a new The Garden of Words that can only be found in novel form to surface. This brings about a new type of young adult novel that will be a departure from typical direct film novelizations.

The novel began serialization in the September 2013 issue of Da Vinci and has received numerous responses on the official Twitter page. The book version will include new material in addition to the serialized portions.

[Makoto Shinkai Profile]
Born in Nagano Prefecture in 1973. Anime director after gaining attention in 2002 for Voices of a Distant Star, an animated short he produced almost completely by himself, he went on to release The Place Promised in Our Early Days, 5 Centimeters Per Second, Children Who Chase Lost Voices, and The Garden of Words and has received critical acclaim at home and abroad. His written work includes the novel 5 Centimeters Per Second: A Novel, which was included in Amazon’s “100 Best Novels of All Time” list in 2013.

[Animated Film The Garden of Words]
A boy who dreams of becoming a shoemaker and a woman who has forgotten how to walk meet in a Japanese garden during the rainy season. She leaves him a poem from the Man’youshu. The subtle drama, which, through its unique sensibilities and word choice, has the thematic quality and style of a novel, is rendered in a way that can only be done through animation.

The film enjoyed a long run and became Shinkai’s biggest hit. Receiving even wider support, it has been shown in 11 countries and regions around the world.

(Available on iTunes, Blu-ray, and DVD)

Title: The Garden of Words: A Novel
Author: Makoto Shinkai
Release Date: April 11, 2014 (Fri)
Price: TBD
Size: 788 mm x 1091 mm, page count TBD
Publisher: Kadokawa
Editor: Media Factory

© Makoto Shinkai / CoMix Wave Films

© Makoto Shinkai / CoMix Wave Films
© Makoto Shinkai / CoMix Wave Films
Director Makoto Shinkai Adapts His Biggest Hit The Garden of Words into a Novel Himself! 2

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