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LAIKA's 'Kubo and The Two Strings' Teaser Arrives

Ever since the premise was first announced, we've been itching to see more of LAIKA's next, Kubo and The Two Strings. The wait is over as the first teaser finally hit this weekend... and it is a thing of beauty. Anything the Portland based stop-motion supremos put out would be worth a look, but following this first footage it's shot right up our most anticipated of 2016 list.

Opening with an amazing and dramatic water effect (that certainly looks like it was done in stop-motion) it's got a fantastic visual style and atmosphere. In a very short time- this is a teaser after all- it manages to give us a good taster of the astonishing artistry on display here.

LAIKA's technical genius has improved exponentially with each film and it looks like this is another quantum leap forward. It's also a step into new territory for the studio, with its Japanese myth-based story a long way from the gothic-tinged dark fairytale style that made their name. The movie has attracted some criticism for casting white actors in such an apparently Asian story  (George Takei aside)- which contrasts with the approach being taken with Cartoon Saloon's The Breadwinner. The Irish studio are similarly stretching themselves by setting a film in Afghanistan, but are actively seeking to cast actors from a correct background.

Such complaints aside it looks like we're in for a treat here, with genuinely beautiful imagery and some gob-smacking set-pieces. Check out the trailer here: Kubo and the Two Strings will be released in August 2016.

Earlier this week, a new poster and synopsis were also released, which you can check out below (Via Den of Geek)

An epic action-adventure from acclaimed animation studio LAIKA. Clever, kindhearted Kubo (voiced by Art Parkinson of “Game of Thrones”) ekes out a humble living, telling fantastical stories to the people of his seaside town. But his relatively quiet existence is shattered when he accidentally summons a mythical spirit from his past which storms down from the heavens to enforce an age-old vendetta. Now on the run, Kubo joins forces with Monkey (Academy Award winner Charlize Theron) and Beetle (Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey), and sets out on a thrilling quest to save his family and solve the mystery of his fallen father, the greatest samurai warrior the world has ever known. With the help of his shamisen – a magical musical instrument – Kubo must battle gods and monsters, including the vengeful Moon King (Academy Award nominee Ralph Fiennes) and the evil twin Sisters (Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara), to unlock the secret of his legacy, reunite his family and his heroic destiny.