The award-winning sequel film to one of 2018’s most popular anime series’ released on Netflix yesterday. Kyoto Animation’s Violet Evergarden: The Movie released with an English dub on the platform, giving international fans of the series a much-needed cry,
Violet Evergarden is a big deal. Author Kana Akatsuki and illustrator Akiko Takase’s light novel was the first-ever entry in the Kyoto Animation Awards to win a grand prize. The annual event is divided into three categories for original novels, manga, and “scenarios,” and several notable honorable mentions have received adaptations by the studio, including big hits like Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions and Free.
Set in a fictional country resembling post-WWI Europe’s industrialization, the series’ eponymous protagonist is a child soldier learning to and finding reasons to live in peacetime. By becoming an Auto Memories Doll, a ghostwriter of sorts, she sees how people all over the world experience love. There’s much more to the story that quickly gets into spoiler territory. You can watch a trailer for the new movie on Netflix below:
Even without a US release of the light novel, KyoAni’s 13 episode adaptation of the original light novel was one of 2018’s most anticipated anime. The season would go on to win Crunchyroll’s Best Animation award, and its popularity spurred the spin-off film Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memory Doll, which won Best Art Direction at 2020’s Tokyo Anime Awards Festival (TAAF).
Having released last year, Violet Evergarden: The Movie is a proper sequel to the anime. It was a huge hit when it was released in Japanese theaters last September, staying within the top ten of the nation’s box office (measured by both yen earned and tickets sold) for ten weeks. When ANN reported sales numbers last November, Violet Evergarden: The Movie had earned the equivalent of US $18.34 million, surpassing the likes of K-On. The film has since received numerous Japanese film and anime awards, including Best Art Direction, Best Screenplay, and the Grand Prize for Feature Film Animation at this year’s TAAF.
The film saw a very brief limited theatrical release in English markets earlier this year, so fans haven’t had the chance to talk about the film widely.
Violet Evergarden, Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memory Doll, and Violet Evergarden: The Movie are streaming now on Netflix.