Saudi animation studio Manga Productions, a subsidiary of Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s MiSK Foundation, has joined hands with Japan’s Toei Animation for anime feature The Journey, it was revealed at the Cannes Film Festival today.
“The Journey is a milestone project for Manga,” said Manga Productions CEO Bukhary Essam. Manga and Toei will jointly collaborate on pre-production and creation of story and the character design with Japanese and Saudi artists working together, they said in a joint statement. Manga Productions is fully financing the film, and has worldwide distribution rights.
The film will be directed by Shizuno Kobun of the Detective Conan films. whose credits include Godzilla: City on the Edge of Battle.
Last year, Manga’s The Woodcutter's Treasure – its first collaboration with Toei Animation – was the first Saudi anime broadcast on Tokyo television. The 25-minute animation was based on an Arabic folk tale.
MiSK Foundation aims to create animation, comic, and video game projects ''to promote Saudi ideas and messages internationally". It signed a memorandum with Japan's Digital Hollywood University in October 2017 to train Saudi designers and programmers in creating animation and games.