U.S. Trailer for ‘Mary and the Witch’s Flower’ Introduces Studio Ponoc’s First Film

Written by on December 27, 2017 

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Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli are back to work on a new feature film, but in the interim when it was thought that The Wind Rises may be their final outing, a handful of veterans from the studio went on to form their own company, Studio Ponoc. Their first feature is Mary and the Witch’s Flower, the latest from director Hiromasa Yonebayashi (The Secret World of Arrietty and When Marnie Was There), an adaptation of Mary Stewart’s The Little Broomstick, as scripted by the director and Riko Sakaguchi (The Tale of the Princess Kaguya). Ahead of a U.S. release in January thanks to GKIDS, a new trailer has now arrived.

The story follows a young girl named Mary (Hana Sugisaki) who discovers a forbidden plant that grants her the power to become a witch for one night. Dan Schindel said in our review, “While there are plenty of small humorous and wondrous beats that work (and the film still easily surpasses the work of most major American animation studios), Mary and the Witch’s Flower can’t escape seeming Ghibli-lite. Going forward, it will be interesting to see whether the artists of Studio Ponoc can establish an identity of their own.”

See the trailer and poster below and read our interview with the director here.

Mary is an ordinary young girl stuck in the country with her Great-Aunt Charlotte and seemingly no adventures or friends in sight. She follows a mysterious cat into the nearby forest, where she discovers an old broomstick and the strange Fly-by-Night flower, a rare plant that blossoms only once every seven years and only in that forest. Together the flower and the broomstick whisk Mary above the clouds, and far away to Endor College – a school of magic run by headmistress Madam Mumblechook and the brilliant Doctor Dee. But there are terrible things happening at the school, and when Mary tells a lie, she must risk her life to try to set things right.

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Mary and the Witch’s Flower opens on January 18.


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