Written by: Jei Beltrano | Published on: March 12, 2021 at 11:24 PM PHT (GMT+8)
The official website of ANIPLEX Japan has announced that the latest film Natsume's Book of Friends: The Waking Rock and the Strange Visitor (Natsume Yūjin-Chō: Ishi Okoshi to Ayashiki Raihōsha) based on Yuki Midorikawa's Natsume's Book of Friends (Natsume Yuujin-chou) manga and anime series is releasing in Blu-ray and DVD format on May 26, 2021 in Japan. The film premiered in Japanese theaters last January 16.
The Blu-ray / DVD version of the film comes with a free online event participation ticket, a drama CD “Forest House”, a specially drawn SD character sticker, a special color booklet, and a newly drawn digital case. In addition, purchasers will also be receiving a video benefit of the big hit thank you stage greeting video that was held last February 16.
The film Natsume's Book of Friends: The Waking Rock and the Strange Visitor is produced by Shuka and directed by Hideki Itou under the chief direction of Takahiro Omori. The cast of the TV anime series reprised their roles in the film with Japanese pop singer Anly performing its theme song titled "Star Wink ~ Star Wink ~".
The cast included:
Hiroshi Kamiya as Takashi Natsume
Kazuhiko Inoue as Madara/"Nyanko-sensei"
Kazuma Horie as Kaname Tanuma
Akemi Okamura as Hinoe
Takaya Kuroda as Misuzu
Chou as Chobihige
Takashi Matsuyama as One-Eyed Middle Class Yokai
Hiroshi Shimozaki as Ox-Faced Middle Class Yokai
Hisako Kanemoto as Mitsumi
The film is composed of two new stories, "Ishi Okoshi (The Waking Rock)" and "Ayashiki Raihōsha (The Strange Visitor)".
Natsume's Book of Friends is a Japanese manga series written by Yuki Midorikawa that was serialized by Hakusensha in the shōjo manga magazine LaLa DX in 2005, before switching to LaLa in 2008. The chapters have been collected in twenty-three bound volumes.
It has been adapted into a TV anime series produced by Brain's Base and is directed by Takahiro Omori. A total of 6 seasons were already released spanning from its first episode release last July 7, 2008. The first season titled "Natsume Yūjin-chō" consisted of 13 episodes and was followed by its second season titled "Zoku Natsume Yūjin-chō" which was aired January 5, 2009 consisting of another 13 episodes. 2 years after, the third season titled "Natsume Yūjin-chō San" was aired July 5, 2011 and was immediately continued to the fourth season titled "Natsume Yūjin-chō Shi" which both seasons consisted of 13 episodes. It was 4 years since the last season was aired and a new season titled "Natsume Yūjin-Chō Go" was announced and aired October 4, 2016 consisting of 11 episodes and followed by its sixth season titled "Natsume Yūjin-chō Roku" with another 11 episodes aired April 11, 2017.
The series is about Natsume, an orphaned teenage boy who can see spirits, who inherits from his grandmother the notebook she used to bind spirits under her control.
It also inspired two films, "Natsume's Book of Friends the Movie: Tied to the Temporal World" which was released in Japanese theaters on September 29, 2018, and the new film titled "Natsume's Book of Friends: The Waking Rock and the Strange Visitor" which premiered in Japanese theaters on January 16, 2021.
Kodansha describes the anime as: Takemichi Hanagaki's life is at an all-time low. Just when he thought it couldn't get worse, he finds out that Hinata Tachibana, his ex-girlfriend, was murdered by the Tokyo Manji Gang: a group of vicious criminals that has been disturbing society's peace for quite some time.
Wondering where it all went wrong, Takemichi suddenly finds himself travelling through time, ending up 12 years in the past—when he was still in a relationship with Hinata. Realizing he has a chance to save her, Takemichi resolves to infiltrate the Tokyo Manji Gang and climb the ranks in order to rewrite the future and save Hinata from her tragic fate.
Source: ANIPLEX Japan Official Site