Tetsuko Kuroyanagi’s Autobiographical Book “Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window” To Be Adapted Into an Animated Movie

“Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window” was first published in 1981 by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi, and became an instant hit with over 25 million copies sold worldwide. The plot follows Totto-chan, a troubled young girl who gets expelled from elementary school and transfers to a new school called Tomoe Gakuen. There she meets children from all different backgrounds and develops a friendly teacher-student relationship with the headmaster. The story depicts wholesome interactions between the students who are completely unaware of an approaching World War 2 that will change their lives forever. 


Known for his work on multiple Doraemon films, Shinnosuke Yakuwa has been appointed as the director and wrote the screenplay with Yosuke Suzuki. A huge fan of the original, Yakuwa allegedly visited Tetsuko multiple times to convince her to let him turn the book into an animated film. Meanwhile, Shizue Kaneko who has worked for Crayon Shin-chan and Doraemon will be in charge of character design. 


Tetsuko’s comments on the film were “After I wrote Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window in 1981, I received many requests from film directors who wanted to turn it into a movie. I often joke that I still remember receiving letters from almost every film director, except Akira Kurosawa. At the time I thought that the images that people who read the book created in their minds would always be better than an attempt to make it into a film. So I declined all of them. Then this time I was asked how I felt about making it into an animated film. In that case, I thought that young people might enjoy watching it. It still makes me happy when I go to a bookstore and hear that they have it, and I look forward to hearing the impressions of the children who have read the book. Recently, the world situation has also changed in various ways, so I hope that the younger generation who sees this movie will find it interesting.” 


“Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window” is scheduled to be released in Japan in the winter of 2023.




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