Makoto Shinkai’s Suzume will begin streaming on Crunchyroll this Thursday, November 16, in all territories where the streamer is present, excluding Asia and France.
Suzume’s streaming arrival is well timed, as the Sony-owned anime distributor Crunchyroll is in the middle of an awards season push which includes an upcoming pop-up installation dedicated to the career and films of Shinkai. The exhibition will take place at the Academy Museum on November 19, with Shinkai in attendance.
Suzume has enjoyed overwhelming critical success and grossed $323.3 million at the worldwide box office, making it the fourth highest-grossing anime feature of all time.
However, box office recognition alone isn’t enough for a film to get awards season love. Crunchyroll has proven to be a distribution powerhouse since being acquired by Sony in 2021, but Suzume is the first major test of the company’s ability to elevate a film to major awards recognition.
Suzume’s official synopsis reads:
On the other side of the door, was time in its entirety—
“Suzume” is a coming-of-age story for the 17-year-old protagonist, Suzume, set in various disaster-stricken locations across Japan, where she must close the doors causing devastation.
Suzume’s journey begins in a quiet town in Kyushu (located in southwestern Japan) when she encounters a young man who tells her, “I’m looking for a door.” What Suzume finds is a single weathered door standing upright in the midst of ruins as though it was shielded from whatever catastrophe struck. Seemingly drawn by its power, Suzume reaches for the knob… Doors begin to open one after another all across Japan, unleashing destruction upon any who are near. Suzume must close these portals to prevent further disaster.
—The stars, then sunset, and the morning sky.
Within that realm, it was as though all time had melted together in the sky…
Never-before-seen scenery, encounters and farewells… A myriad of challenges await her on her journey. Despite all the obstacles in her way, Suzume’s adventure shines a ray of hope upon our own struggles against the toughest roads of anxiety and constraints that make up everyday life. This story of closing doors that connect our past to the present and future will leave a lasting impression upon all of our hearts.
Drawn in by these mysterious doors, Suzume’s journey is about to begin.
Suzume was written and directed by Shinkai. Kenichi Tsuchiya served as animation director and Takumi Tanji as art director. Comix Wave Films handled animation and produced with Story Inc.
With the December 8 theatrical release of Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron just around the corner, 2023 has proved to be a banner year for prestige anime, and both films could have a major impact on this year’s awards season.