Friday, September 13, 2013

Wolf Girl, a live-action fan film inspired by Princess Mononoke, turns to Kickstarter for funding

What do you get when you combine a deep love for an imaginative, modern-day fairty tale with a handful of Brits who have a surprisingly capable grasp on computer-generated graphics?

The answer is either a Neil Gaiman production team, or the recently announced Wolf Girl live-action companion film to Princess Mononoke.

Set some 600 years after the events of Princess Mononoke, the story of Wolf Girl follows a similar trajectory as the Ghibli film - the balance between the cities and forest has fallen out of harmony, and the forest spirits reach out for a savior once again.

Wolf Girl's creators alternatively describe it as "a modern-day Mononoke-inspired adventure" and  "a fairytale of wondrous creatures in a world inspired by Studio Ghibli". No matter which you prefer, I think you'll be excited for Wolf Girl once you see the teaser trailer below.

Like so many fan films before it, Wolf Girl has turned to Kickstarter for funding and plans to release the film on a DVD assuming that it can raise its budget of £29,000 (~$46,000) - and that, perhaps, is going to be its problem.

While the project looks amazing and a digital download of the film is available for a pledge of £10 (~$16), the Kickstarter is UK-based and, for whatever reason, non-US Kickstarters have struggled to capture the momentum of their American-based success stories (Ouya, Smartwatches, anything from Double Fine Productions).

Still, Studio Ghibli fans have proven that they're a fantatical bunch, and Wolf Girl isn't asking for a huge budget to produce "a fan film made with cinematic quality" so it's even odds that it'll hit its funding goal - even if it's only raised 6% of its budget with 15 days left on the clock.

Yet even if its misses its goal, odds are also good that it'll fall just short an relaunch from the US in a few months (if history is any indication).

Cynicism about Kickstarter in the UK notwithstanding, Wolf Girl really looks amazing and the CG for the Kodama tree spirits looks quite polished.  If you'd like to donate to Wolf Girl, you can pledge to its Kickstarter here or check out its official website for more information.

Although, what you need past "it's a live-action Princess Mononoke film" is beyond me.