Once in a century
the Sacred Spirit dwells
within a human being
Kenji Kamiyama, acclaimed director of the Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. series, succeeded in incorporating modern issues such as refugees, nuclear weapons and terrorism into the Sci-Fi world. In his new project, entitled Guardian of the Spirit, he daringly rearranged the intense Asian-flavored fantasy atmosphere of the original novels written by Nahoko Uehashi, tracing a continuity line with the the reality of our world. This new TV series promises to be even more challenging than the Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. saga.
Balsa, a female bodyguard bearing a short spear as her weapon, visits the New Yogo Empire after a long time. Here she assists to an incident, and saves a young boy. His name is Chagum, and he is no less than the second prince of the Empire. But his fate seems to be even greater than his rank: inside the boy's body, lays the egg of the Water Spirit, thus making him the Guardian of the Spirit, an event that happens only once in one hundred years.
The Second Queen, sensing that Chagum's father, the Mikado, did not welcome the situation and would try to eliminate the boy, desperately asks Balsa to become Chagum's bodyguard and take him to a safe place.
Undertaking a job that puts her life at risk and turns the whole Imperial Court her enemy, Balsa makes her escape from the palace with Chagum.
But entities from a parallel dimension, called Nayugu, are also after the two fugitives. Their aim appears simple and frightening at once: they want to devour the egg within Chagum's body.
Their flight from tenacious pursuers has just begun.
On Nahoko Uehashi
Left the Rikkyo University after successful fulfillment of the doctoral course of cultural anthropology. She specialized in the Australian aborigines. After working as an assistant at Kagawa Education Institute of Nutrition, became an assistant professor of Kawamura Gakuen Women's University. She writes unique fantasy novels from the viewpoint of cultural anthropology. Her works include the debut work Seirei no Ki (Tree of the Spirit, 1989), Tsuki no mori ni, Kami yo nemure (Sleep in the Woods of the Moon, Oh God, 1991, winner of the 25th New Artist Award from the Japan Children's Book Artists Society, 1992), Koteki no Kanata (Beyond the Fox's Flute, 2003, winner of the 42nd Noma Children's Books Award, 2004) and the essay Tonari no Aborigine: Chiisana Machi ni Kurasu Senjumin (Aborigines Next Door: Natives Living in a Small Town, 2000).
The Moribito (Guardian) series, a grand epic fantasy in Asian style, started in 1996, and is continuously expanding today with the Tabibito (Traveler) series. The whole corpus counts now 10 volumes, that grossed 400,000 copies sold in Japan. The Guardian series has also received many awards, including Noma Children's Books Award, Sankei Children's Book Award, Nippon Broadcasting System Award and Iwaya Sazanami Literary Award.
The TV series is based on the first two books, Guardian of the Spirit and Guardian of Darkness, and Kenji Kamiyama personally worked on the screenplay.
official website (Japanese only)
Air Date in Japan: April 4, 2007~ September 29, 2007 on NHK BS2
Format: 26 x 30'
© Nahoko UEHASHI/KAISEI-SHA/Guardian of the Spirit Committee