All eyes have been on director Makoto Shinkai’s latest, Weathering With You, for most of the year, but one of his previous films is back in the spotlight again. The movie in question is 2013’s The Garden of Words, which is officially getting a stage play adaptation courtesy of U.K. theatrical company Whole Hog Theatre.
The Garden of Words stage play is set for a July 15 to August 15 run at London’s Park Theatre in Finsbury Park. Nelke Planning will also be participating in the production, which will follow up with a run in Tokyo.
The Princess Mononoke play’s Alexandra Rutter will direct the play, with plans for puppetry, movement, and projection art as part of the experience. Look for the performance to include English along with occasional Japanese.
Here’s how Whole Hog Theatre describes the story of the anime film:
Rainy season. Tokyo. Akizuki is skipping class; Yukino should be at work.
When a student and an older woman seeking solace in a Japanese garden meet by chance, their mutual feelings of alienation draw them together. But a truth is about to be uncovered. The friendship that could save them might also ruin them…
Based on the stereotype-defying Anime by world-renowned director Makoto Shinkai (your name.), The Garden of Words is a modern Tokyo tale inspired by ancient Man’yōshū poetry. This subtle drama explores invisible disability, loss of human connection in a digital world and challenges us to consider the moral line between platonic and romantic longing.