Header Ads

GKIDS Films Acquire Rights For Loundrow's 'Summer Ghost'

Let's be honest...the biggest icons of Japanese animation such as Hayao Miyazaki, Mamoru Oshii and Katsuhiro Otomo are not exactly spring chickens. There are younger generations of directors like Makoto Shinkai, Masaki Yusa, and Mamoru Hosoda- but even they are pretty established talents at this stage. What about the real whippersnappers, the up-and-coming talents?

The artist known as Loundrow might be just that. Aged just 26, he's been building up an impressive portfolio since he was a teenager, gaining a following online for his illustrations. From there he went on to illustrate the original novel of I Want To Eat Your Pancreas, and was a concept designer on the recent anime feature Josee The Tiger And The Fish. He also produced a music video for popular Japanese rockers Bump Of Chicken, quickly racking up over 2 million views.

GKIDS Films have announced that they have acquired the North American rights to Loundrow's first long-form work, the 'short feature' Summer Ghost. The 40-minute film is the first production of  FLAT STUDIO, the animation studio he founded in 2019.

Loundrow is the director and character designer, and he also came up with the original concept, which is based on a single illustration. The director collaborated with Japanese novelist Hirotaka Adachi (aka Otsuichi) who wrote the screenplay and internationally recognised pianist Akira Kosemura, who wrote the music.


A local urban legend claims that lighting fireworks at an abandoned airfield will call the “summer ghost,” a spirit that can answer any question. Three troubled teenagers – Tomoya, Aoi, and Ryo – do not know each other yet, but each has their own reasons to show up one day. When a sparkler is lit, a ghost named Ayane appears, and she reveals she is only visible to those “who are about to touch their death.” The three teens return home, but Tomoya soon begins visiting the airfield alone, as he becomes obsessed with the mystery surrounding Ayane and the true purpose of her visits.


Inspired by one of his own drawings, this remarkable directorial debut from the celebrated illustrator loundraw brings his lush visual sensibility to a poignant supernatural drama about the struggles of growing up, and the importance of living life to the fullest. 

Despite the short running time, GKIDS plan to release the film theatrically in both original language and English dubbed versions this summer. The film will be screened alongside a new documentary on the making of the film and more bonus content (which will be revealed at a later date).

Anime Limited recently revealed that they had acquired the UK rights for the film and would screen it at the BFI this May.