The anime film adaptation of Osamu Souda’s short novel series Seven Days War (Bokura no Nanokakan Sensou), which has over 20 million copies in print, will be released on December 13, 2019.
The film is set in Hokkaido in the year 2020, almost 30 years since Japanese actress Rie Miyazawa made her debut as Hitomi Nakayama in the 1988 live-action film adaptation Seven Days’ War. It has been revealed that she will reprise her role as Nakayama in the new animated film.
A press conference was held to promote the film which was attended by the main voice cast, including Takumi Kitamura (who voices Mamoru Suzuhara), Kyōko Yoshine (Aya Chiyono), and Tatsuhisa Suzuki (Sōma Ogata). The film’s director Yuta Murano also made an appearance.
The film sees a group of children use an old coal factory as secret base to hold a 1-week birthday camp away from the adults. In line with the story, the venue for the press conference itself was set up to look like an abandoned factory. Kitamura, who plays the protagonist Mamoru, commented on the atmosphere the studio gave off. “It’s exciting, isn’t it? It makes you feel just like they do in the film. It’s a strange feeling <laughs>.” Yoshine, who voices the main heroine Aya, followed this up, saying, “It feels like I’ve jumped right into the film. I feel really happy.” Suzuki, who voices their classmates Sōma, also said, “Normally when I’m in the studio, I often have to picture the scenes in my head. I’m so happy they did this, it’s not often you get to see it in real life.”
This marked Yuta Murano’s film director debut, and when asked about the studio set himself, he responded: “It makes you recall going to that place in the film. It’s nostalgic <laughs>.” Speaking about what he’s expressing with the film, he explained: “I believe the film has a lot of different messages for each generation, whether it’s the people who grew up with the manga or live-action film, kids in their teens like Mamoru and the other characters, and those even younger than that. Mamoru and the others aren’t children who hold some kind of special power. And that’s why it’s aimed at children. It says to them, ‘This film is for you.'”
Murano was also asked about the film’s use of the main theme song SEVEN DAYS WAR by TM NETWORKーoriginally featured in the live-action adaptationーduring an important scene in the film. He responded: “We were in talks with others for the main theme song, but we wanted to respect the previous work, and as a fan of Seven Days War, when you’re talking about that film, I felt that that song is indispensable […]”
Each member was asked to give his impressions of the other cast members present at the conference. Kitamura said: “Whenever I spoke with the director, he had a kind demeanour. It gave me moral support when he said to me, ‘You already sound like Mamoru.’ It was when I heard those words that I thought what a warm atmosphere the set had. Yoshine is strong-willed and has a really great voice. We both supported each other while surrounded by such professional voice actors <laughs>. Suzuki also really helped me out. He taught me so many things during the recording. I realised how amazing voice actors really are.”
Following this, Yoshine said: “The director was so kind in guiding me on certain things, like how close I should be to the mic during rehearsals, and how I should go about speaking while looking at the scenes. His help cleared many of my worries away, so it’s thanks to him that I was welcomed so warmly when it came to the real recording. Kitamura really had our backs, didn’t he, Suzuki? <laughs> Whenever the voice actors seemed a bit down, he would take it on board and support them from behind. I was able to overcome everything because everyone had strength.”
Suzuki said: “I was kindly given this role on my first audition. I heard I’d be recording with the two of them, and all the main members got together […] I was asked by the sound team to be a mediator between the two of them so that they feel good and perform like they always do, so I paid much more attention to the atmosphere on set after that. When I was talking to the director and staff, I also heard about a delicious restaurant from Yoshine <laughs>.”
Kitamura is known for liking anime. He gets excited when talking about his co-voice-actors, as well as voice actors from other series. “Oh, it’s that character’s voice!” he said. He continued, “The main recording took two days, so it was a ‘Two Days War,’ and also ‘Two Days Inspiration’ <laughs>.”
Each member gave a final comment. “Please go and watch this recreation of the first days of youth adulthood we have worked so hard to make!” said Suzuki. Yoshine commented: “I am overjoyed to be associated with something with history and something loved by so many people. I hope it’s enjoyed by lots of people.” Kitamura concluded with: “When I was in elementary school, we had the books in our library. It’s a series that helped me deal with pent-up feelings I had towards my parents and teachers at the time. I am so grateful to be involved with an anime adaptation of it. So just as it gave me courage when I was in school, I hope it continues to do the same for teenagers who have some kind of pent-up feelings too.”
Seven Days War
Release Date: December 13, 2019
Based on: Seven Days War (Bokura no Nanokakan Sensou) by Osamu Souda (KADOKAWA Tsubasa Bunko/KADOKAWA Bunko/KADOKAWA)
Official Website: http://7dayswar.jp/