Studio Chizu shared a new key visual for Belle, featuring the two protagonists: Suzu, aka as Belle, and the mysterious dragon. They also revealed more of the staff.
Belle is Mamoru Hosoda’s latest feature film, following on from his work on the Oscar-nominated feature film Mirai.
Akiya Kageichi will be drawing the original character designs for the Dragon. Takaaki Yamashita is taking the role of chief animation director for portions of the film taking place inside of ‘U’, and Hiroyuki Aoyama will be responsible as the chief animation director for the real-world portions. Nobutaka Ike will be taking the role of the background art director, with Anri Jojo heading up the art setting. They have also shared that Ryo Horibe and Yohei Shimozawa will be taking up CG roles for the film.
Here is a synopsis of the story:
Our protagonist, Suzu, is a 17-year-old high school girl who lives in the countryside of Kochi Prefecture with her father, after losing her mother at a young age.
She loves singing with her mother more than anything else, but as a result of her mother’s death was no longer able to sing.
It wasn’t long before she and her father grew more and more distant from each other, and Suzu closed her heart to the rest of the world.
When Suzu felt that writing music was her only purpose left in life, she then discovers the massive online space known as ‘U’, where she takes on her persona, Belle.
We are no longer limited to a single world.
Suzu quickly realizes that when she is inside ‘U’ as her avatar, Belle, she can sing quite naturally. As she continues to showcase her own music in the virtual world, she fast becomes the rising star of ‘U’.
Nonetheless, that surprise is short-lived. Suddenly, a mysterious dragon-shaped creature appears before her…
Belle will kick off ticket pre-sales today, 21 May 2021, with the film opening in Japan on 16 June 2021. As of the time of this writing, we don’t have an international release date for the film.