Landmarks: Wings of Honneamise

R1 Pubisher: Manga Entertainment, Bandai Visual USA
Animation: Gainax
Producers: Bandai Visual
Original Release: 3/14/1987
US Release: 6/20/1995

What is it?

Wings of Honneamise is a feature film set in an alternate planet Earth. On this planet, two nations prepare for a war that could devastate the population. In one of the nations, a small space program, well, more a joke siphoning money from the military, exists with the goal of one day slipping from the surly bonds of the planet to explore the final frontier.

One member of the Royal Space Force, Shiro Lhadatt, is an unmotivated worker that is just coasting through his position. After an accident that claims the life of one of his crewmates, Shiro forms a relationship with Riquinni Nonderaiko, a woman who is strong in faith, and somehow positive despite her own hardships. Riquinni manages to give Shiro a renewed sense of hope, and encourages him to defy all odds and be the first man in space. However, time grows short, as the Royal Space Force must complete their mission, and enter space before their country’s military co-opts the program to launch an all-out war.

Why is it important?

Wings of Honneamise is Gainax’s first major project. In addition, the film served as a launching point for the careers of five major directors, and two manga creators. The full list is as follows:

It’s safe to say that, without the Wings of Honneamise, it would be safe to say that Gainax as we know it would not exist, and the anime landscape itself would be vastly different.

Any Interesting Stories?

  • Wings of Honneamise originally hit American shores shortly after its Japanese release as Star Quest – a dubbed, heavily-edited version of the film.
  • The film was originally panned by critics and viewers in its original run, and only managed modest profits.
  • A sequel to the film was originally planned, though it was scrapped due to budgetary reasons in 1993. The title began production in 1992, and would have been titled Aoki Uru (Blue Uru). If the film were completed, it would have been set fifty years after the original. The cancellation of Aoki Uru was fortuitous for the slated director, Hideaki Anno, who went on to create the influential Neon Genesis Evangelion.


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About the author

Samantha Ferreira

Samantha Ferreira is Anime Herald’s founder and editor-in-chief. A Rhode Island native, Samantha has been an anime fan since 1992, and an active member of the anime press since 2002, when she began working as a reviewer for Anime Dream. She launched Anime Herald in 2010, and continues to oversee its operations to this day. Outside of journalism, Samantha actively studies the history of the North American anime fandom and industry, with a particular focus on the 2000s anime boom and bust. She’s a huge fan of all things Sakura Wars, and maintains series fansite Combat Revue Review when she has free time available. When not in the Anime Herald Discord, Samantha can typically be found on Bluesky.

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