Welp… we can scratch that off of our Anime Club show short list.
On April 5, the official Piano Forest (Piano no Mori) Twitter account announced that Netflix licensed the series for global distribution. The publisher will stream the show in 190 countries across the globe starting in Fall 2018.
— TVアニメ ピアノの森 (@piano_anime_tv) April 6, 2018
Rough Translation: Netflix is the exclusive streaming provider! The series will start streaming at 3:00AM immediately after each episode airs. In addition, we’re announcing that Netflix will stream the show in more than 190 countries worldwide. The whole story will be distributed in Fall 2018. #ピアノの森 #Netflix
The Piano Forest began airing on NHK on April 8, at 24:10 (4/9/2018 at 12:10AM).
Gaku Nakatani is directing the series at Gainax Fukushima, with Sumie Kinoshita (Girlish Number, A Sister’s All You Need) filling the dual role of character designer and chief animation director. The team of Mika Abe (Danchi Tomoo) and Aki Itami (Rainbow Days, Flowers of Evil) is in charge of series composition.
Aoi Yūki will perform closing theme song Kaeru Basho ga Aru to Iu Koto (To Have a Place to Come Home To).
The series stars the following:
- Kai Ichinose (Adult): Sōma Saitō
- Shūhei Amamiya (Adult): Natsuki Hanae
- Kai Ichinose (Child): Ryoko Shiraishi
- Shūhei Amamiya (Child): Yō Taichi
- Sōsuke Ajino: Junichi Suwabe
- Wei Pang: Yūichi Nakamura
- Kōsei Hirata: Toshiyuki Toyonaga
- Reiko Ichinose: Maaya Sakamoto
- Lech Szymanowski: KENN
- Takako Maruyama: Aoi Yūki
- Sophie Ormesson: Mariya Ise
- Karol Adamski: Katsuyuki Konishi
- Takeshi Saga: Koji Yusa
- Kōtarō Shiba: Hiroshi Yanaka
- Namie Amamiya: Marie Miyake
- Arisa: Ryou Hirohashi
- Daigaku Kanehira: Motoko Kumai
- Yōichirō Amamiya: Hideyuki Tanaka
- Jean-Jacques Theroux: Bin Shimada
The confirmed pianists include (matching characters in parentheses):
- Kyohei Sorita (Sosuke Ajino)
- Ryoma Takagi (Shuhei Amamiya)
- Wei Pang (Niu Niu)
- Lech Szymanowski (Szymon Nehring)
- Sophie Ormesson (Juliette Journaux)
- Kotone Uehara
- Modan Ooyama
- Kamuro Sahara
- Ayano Baba
The Piano Forest manga launched in the pages of Kodansha’s now-defunct Young Magazine Uppers in 1998. The series ran through 2015, switching to Weekly Morning magazine after Young Magazine Uppers‘ demise. The title spans 26 collected volumes, in total.
Madhouse produced an anime film based on The Piano Forest, which hit theaters in 2007. Masayuki Kojima (Made in Abyss, Monster) directed the project, while Shigeru Fujita (Eureka Seven: Hi – Evolution, Monster) provided character designs. Ryuta Hourai wrote the movie’s screenplay.
Manga resource Baka-Updates describes the title as:
A tranquil tale about Shuhei Amamiya, who transfers to Moriwaki Elementary filled with hope and ambition about his new life. But it doesn’t take long before he gets picked on by the class bullies, and gets involved in a dare to play the mysterious piano in the forest, leading to his meeting an enigmatic child that goes by the name of Kai Ichinose, who seems to be the only one capable of getting sound out of the thought-to-be broken piano. His ability earns him the respect of Shuhei and his music teacher, former master pianist Sosuke Ajino. At first Kai is resistant to refining his art but after hearing Sosuke play a Chopin piece he just can’t seem to play by himself, he relents.
Source: Twitter (JapanUnmasked)