for fans of
Diana Wynne Jones

Aya and the Witch

Studio Ghibli's anime film of Earwig and the Witch, renamed as Aya and the Witch, will have its world premiere on 18th October 2020. It will be shown under the Cannes 2020 Selection umbrella during the Festival Lumiere in Lyon, France.

Aya and the Witch still
still from Aya and the Witch
still from Aya and the Witch

Aya and the Witch (Aya to majo) was originally due to be launched at the 2020 Cannes Film Festival, which was cancelled due to Covid-19. It will have its Japanese premiere in December when it will be shown on NHK's main television channel. Then, in the first half of 2021 the film is due to be released in cinemas around the world.

Studio Ghibli also produced 2004's Oscar-nominated anime film of Howl's Moving Castle, which was directed by the legendary Hayao Miyazaki. A fan of the Earwig story, Hayao Miyazaki wrote the script for Aya and the Witch and was involved in the film's development, while it was directed by his son Goro Miyazaki. 

The Japanese book edition of Earwig and the Witch quotes Hayao Miyazaki saying: 'WHAT A LOVELY BOOK. Satake-san's illustrations and the fine work of the editors have imbued this book, the last book from Diana Wynne Jones-san, with an indescribable charm. I READ THE BOOK ABOUT FIVE TIMES FROM COVER TO COVER.'

Aya and the Witch will run for 1 hour 22 minutes.

Images copyright © 2020 NHK, NEP, Studio Ghibli