Studio Ghibli has announced that Goro Miyazaki (the eldest son of Hayao Miyzaki) will be adapting the Swedish fantasy book ‘Ronia the Robber’s Daughter’ to television. This is not his first stint in directing, since he has previously worked on Tales from Earthsea, and From Up On Poppy Hill, but it will be his first time trying television, as well as the first work of Ghibli’s in the same media.
The book was written by Astrid Lindgren, in 1981, and here’s the synopsis:
Ronia is a girl who grew up among a clan of robbers living in a castle in the woodlands of early-Medieval Scandinavia. As the only child of Mattis, the chief, she is expected to become the leader of the clan someday. Their castle, Mattis’s Fort, is split in two parts by a lightning bolt on the day of Ronia’s birth. Soon afterwards, a different clan of robbers, the “Borkas”, settles the other side of the mountain, resulting in much strife between the two clans.
One day, Ronia sees Birk Borkason, the only son of the enemy chieftain, idling by the chasm that splits the two parts of the castle. He is the only other child she has ever met, and so she is sorry that he is a Borka. He engages her in a game of jumping across, which does not end until Birk almost falls down. Ronia saves him and they become friends.
Their adventures will tell us how they both meet several fantastical creatures that live in the forest, which seems to be right up Studio Ghibli’s alley. Although the original book is for children, Goro Miyazaki has said that his “goal is to create a work that everyone, from children to adults, will be able to enjoy.”
The TV series will be a co-production with Polygon Pictures (Ghost In The Shell, Star Wars: The Clone Wars), and will premiere this Fall. The studios have hinted that this may be just the first of their television works.