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Noted Japanese author Haruki Murakami is happy with first animated adaptation of his short stories


Kathmandu: Renowned Japanese author Haruki Murakami expressed joy with how several of his short stories were adapted in American director Pierre Földes’ animated film “Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman”, adding he wanted to see future interpretations of his work with filmmakers’ own spin.

The Japanese language version of the 2022 film will be released for the first time in Japan on July 26. It is the first animated adaptation of Murakami’s work.

After screening the film Saturday at his alma mater Waseda University in Tokyo, Murakami — joining Földes at a talk session — admitted that while he wasn’t a fan of animated films, he watched it twice.

The filmmaker was inspired by six of Murakami’s short stories: “Super-Frog Saves Tokyo” and “U.F.O. in Kushiro”— from “After the Quake,” collection, written after the fatal 1995 Kobe earthquake — and ”Birthday Girl,” “Dabchick,” “The Windup Bird and Tuesday’s Women.”

“Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman” is set in Tokyo in the aftermath of the March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and the Fukushima meltdowns. It focuses on three main characters — Katagiri, a diligent but lonely and confidence-lacking banker who teams up with a giant talking frog to save Tokyo from an imminent second quake, his unenthusiastic younger colleague and his wife Kyoko, who — depressed and glued to earthquake news on TV — leaves him. Through recollections and dreams, the three eventually find peace and the ability to start anew.

Source: AP