Thankfully for Studio Ghibli fans, the creative prowess of the animators who worked on Ghibli classics can be enjoyed in works outside of those made for the world-famous anime studio. Such works include a touching commercial made for Japanese bread company Francois, which came into existence by the hands of Studio Ghibli animator Yoshiharu Sato. Sato worked not only as a key animator for movies like Porco Rosso, The Dog of Flanders, and The Secret World of Arrietty, but was also indispensable to the directing and designing of My Neighbor Totoro.

Source: YouTube

The commercial, which promotes the Fukuoka-based company’s Slow Bread products, tells the romantic tale of Cassis and Aries. Although the commercial itself has actually been aired over the past 10 years exclusively in the Kyushu region, a longer version was recently released online in commemoration for its 10th anniversary.

The story begins with a 17-year-old girl named Cassis who runs a local bakery with her mother. One day, she meets a boy named Aries, who she learns is a student of architecture from Paris traveling Europe for research. They are immediately drawn to each other, but Cassis soon leaves for a bigger city to begin her apprenticeship as a baker...

"The Story of Cassis and Aries"

Many viewers likened "The Story of Cassis and Aries" to the much-loved film Kiki's Delivery Service, and it's easy to see why. And while Yoshihiro Sato was the main director of the work, he was also assisted by Akihiko Yamashita, yet another prominent Studio Ghibli animator who worked on Howl's Moving Castle in the past.

Simultaneously released online was the continuation of “The Story of Cassis and Aries,” which shows the aftermath of the two characters upon the return of Cassis as a baker-in-training.

"A New Tale"

Apparently, more of this animated commercial series will be released by Francois in the future, so stay updated via the Francois website and catch up on their past videos!

By - grape Japan editorial staff.