GKIDS has taken North American rights from Japan’s Toho Co. Ltd. to distribute “Grave of the Fireflies,” the 1988 feature from Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata. The critically-beloved film is told in flashbacks from the perspective of two children as it follows the devastation of Japan during the end of WWII. It is considered to be one of the greatest works to come out of Studio Ghibli, along with “MY Neighbor Totoro” and “Spirited Away.”
“Grave of the Fireflies” was originally released as a double feature with “My Neighbor Totoro,” despite its heavy subject matter. GKIDS plans to release the film in 2013 to celebrate its 25th anniversary. It will also play as part of their touring Studio Ghibli Retrospective.
GKIDS’ Eric Beckman states, “This deal finally reunites a great Isao Takahata masterwork with the rest of the Studio Ghibli films. It is a profoundly moving film and an essential part of the Ghibli legacy.”
GKIDS began its agreement with Studio Ghibli in 2011 to release fourteen of their past titles. It is also planning a release of their latest film, “From Up on Poppy Hill,” in March 2013.
Meanwhile, Sentai Filmworks released the Blu-ray of “Grave of the Fireflies” on November 20.