Suzume No Tojimari Was Originally Set To Be A Romance Between Two Girls

Suzume No Tojimari

Makoto Shinkai’s original script for Suzume No Tojimari was not supposed to be your typical “boy-meets-girl” romance, but rather a romance between two girls. This was revealed by the director in a recent interview with Looper.

According to Shinkai, he was tired of telling a story in the traditional way and wanted to take a different approach for his latest film Suzume No Tojimari. But his efforts were in vain as the producers of the film convinced him to change the plot to one that will appeal to the masses.

“I felt that in ‘Your Name,’ I [did] everything that I possibly could in terms of ‘boy meets girl’ and ‘will they, won’t they, will they meet.’ That element of romance is very relatable to the masses, which is why it was a subject matter that resonated with a large audience. 

Personally, because I’ve done that so many times, I pivoted. I wanted to pivot to a more sisterhood type of romantic story, but I had to change that because my producer said, ‘You may be tired of these romantic stories, but your audience loves it‘.”

Due to this, he made Suzume’s primary interest a chair to not give the film too much of a romance element.

Shinkai was of the opinion that even though he hadn’t written a lot on LGBTQ+ or isn’t actively writing on it, he feels that in case of Suzume, the main character, the idea just works.

This is not just when it comes to a female love interest, the plot would work whether she was a boy or a non-binary. In the end it is more about “a human overcoming something”.

In terms of the LGBTQ commentary, it’s not something that I’m actively trying to write or not write or [is] a conscious decision. But with this film, Suzume as the main character, it works. But I think it would also work had she been a boy or had she been non-binary. It’s not necessarily the context of male/female; it’s about a human overcoming something.

He also added that for his future films he would like to lean more towards a “human story as opposed to too much commentary on gender or sex.”

Suzume No Tojimari

Suzume No Tojimari released in US release on April 14, 2023. It went on to earn $5 million in its opening weekend.

It released in Japan on Nov 11, 2022.

Shinkai directed and wrote the screenplay for Suzume no Tojimari. He’s also the author of the original story.

Other staff members of the movie include:

  • Character design: Masayoshi Tanaka
  • Animation director: Kenichi Tsuchiya
  • Art director: Takumi Tanji
  • Studio: CoMix Wave Film
  • Production producer: STORY inc.
  • Distribution: Toho Animation

Nanoha Hara is voicing the titular character Suzume in the movie and Hokuto Matsumura will voice the other main character Souta Munakata.

Other cast of the film includes:

  • Eri Fukatsu as Tamaki Iwato, Suzume’s aunt
  • Matsumoto Hakuō II as Hitsujirō Munakata, Sota’s grandfather
  • Shōta Sometani as Minoru Okabe, Tamaki’s colleague
  • Sairi Itō as Rumi Ninomiya, Single mother raising twins, who Suzume encounters in Kobe
  • Kotone Hanase as Chika Amabe, a lively girl of the same age as Suzume, whom she meets in Ehime
  • Kana Hanazawa as Tsubame Iwato, Suzume’s mother
  • Ryunosuke Kamiki as Tomoya Serizawa, a friend of Souta

RADWIMPS and Kazuma Jinnouchi composed the music for film, with Tik tok famed Toaka performing the theme song, “Suzume”.

Suzume No Tojimari film’s soundtrack comprises of two theme songs, “Kanata Haruka” and “Suzume,” twenty five additional songs and a brand new song created during the film’s production by Yojiro Noda, called “Tamaki”. RADWIMPS also released the official music video for KANATA HALUKA.

The officially announced story of Suzume no Tojimari is described as:

Suzume is a 17-year-old, who lives in a quiet town in Kyushu. One day, she meets a traveling young man who is looking for a “door.” Suzume decides to follow him and discovers an old door in the ruins in the mountains. As if drawn by something, Suzume reaches out for the door… What follows is Suzume’s liberation and growth as she closes the “doors” that cause misfortune in abandoned places around Japan.

Source: Looper

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