Ghost in the Shell director Mamoru Oshii to make English-language feature film debut

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Even if you’re a complete anime luddite, chances are you’ve at least heard of Ghost in the Shell. Director Mamuro Oshii’s 1995 adaptation of Masamune Shirow’s cyberpunk manga is considered one of the greatest anime films ever made, and for many was their first taste of proper mature Japanese animation (that didn’t involve tentacles).

Oshii has quite the highly regarded filmography, but only one entry – 2001’s Avalon – actually involved real people. But now he’ll be moving away from the animation world once again, and simultaneously making his English film debut with the military sci-fi actioner, The Last Druid: Garm Wars.

Oshii actually began development on the film straight after GITS in 1995, originally envisioning it as a mix of live action, animation and CGI. Three pilot films were produced to sell the concept, but then everything stalled as Oshii realized that “at that time, the digital environment needed to realize the visuals was too undeveloped, and I was unable to create and release this film to the world. However, now in 2012, the environment for producing films has transformed, especially in digital technology which is currently operating at a shocking level compared to the time I first conceived this project. At long last, Garm Wars’ time has come.”

As to what Garm Wars is actually about, well, this may be a live action English feature film, but it has a plot straight out of Oshii’s anime roots. The Nakamura Group Advantage, a Canadian entertainment company that financed and will be producing the film, describes it as follows:

Taking place in a world of war known as Annwn, Garm Wars sets the scene with clone soldiers from 3 military tribes, in a bloody and perpetual battle of air, land and technology. One clone, Khara, finds herself separated from battle and on the run with unlikely companions. In seeking to know more about their joint existence, the fugitives instead find an unrelenting truth and the greatest battle of their lives.

Oshii collaborated on the English-language script for the film with writer Geoffrey Gunn, who also penned the 2013 Dracula in WW2 thriller Fangs of War starring Tom “Draco Malfoy” Fenton, and it’s certainly sounding ambitious enough. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this one, and will provide due warning in case any tentacles rear their heads.

Last Updated: November 15, 2012

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions - but very little sleep - I've been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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