Studio Ghibli has announced its first ever TV series, based on a book by Pippi Longstocking author Astrid Lindgren.
What do Studio Ghibli and Astrid Lindgren have in common? A love of sassy female leads, for one. A work combining the two makes a lot of sense, especially considering the recent film Arrietty was based on The Borrowers by Mary Norton.
And this is great, because for its very first foray into an animated series, studio Ghibli has announced it will be making Ronia the Robber's Daughter, a show about a sassy girl who stands poised to inherit her father's gang of thieves.
In the book, on the day Ronia is born, a bolt of lightning splits her father the robber chieftain's fort in two, dividing the robber clan. One day, Ronia befriends a boy — who just happens to be the son of the rival chieftain — and swashbuckling fantasy adventures ensue.
The series will be directed by Goro Miyazaki, son of Hayao Miyazaki, who also directed the somewhat disappointing Tales from Earthsea and the rather better From Up on Poppy Hill.
Goro said of the new series, "Ronia the Robber's Daughter is a story not just about a girl who grows into adulthood, but it is also a story about the love and growth between a parent and a child, and a story about the bonds between friends. My goal is to create a work that everyone, from children to adults, will be able to enjoy."
Ronia the Robber's Daughter will air on government-run television channel NHK in autumn (spring in the southern hemisphere). No plans have been announced for an English release, although we suspect it's only a matter of time.