The Animax Awards are an animation script contest award organized by CS animation channel Animax since 2002 to discover tomorrow's leading artists in the anime industry.
This is a dream project: the awarded scripts are animetized by leading anime studios in Japan and are aired by Animax the following year. The theme for the fifth Animax Awards was "a story you wish to be animated."
There were about 1,000 contestants and the winner was Akari Tsukino's Yumedamaya Kidan (Yumedamaya: The Strange Tale of the Dreamball Dealer.)
The job of translating the winning story into a 25-minute animated film has been entrusted to Production I.G. The production team, under director Itsuro Kawasaki (Tsubasa Chronicle: The Princess of the Birdcage Kingdom) includes character designer / animation director Shoko Nakamura (Dead Leaves, Mushishi, Gurren Lagann) and art director Hiroshi Ono (Le Chevalier D'Eon, Kiki's Delivery Service). The original design for the characters, as well as the illustration for the poster, have been provided by manga artist and illustrator Yosuke Takahashi. The score is supervised by Tatsuya Ishii, also known as music group Kome Kome Club leader, who was a special judge at the Fifth Animax Awards.
Yumedamaya: The Strange Tale of the Dreamball Dealer premiered in Japan on Animax on November 25, 2007.
Naho, an eleven-year-old girl, lives with her father and her two-year-old brother Jun. Her mother died after giving birth to Jun, so Naho has to take care of young Jun at home. Understandingly, this situation is frustrating to little Naho. A girl of her age would be dying to go out and play with friends, but because of Jun, she has to give priority to her duties.
One day, a bizarre man, wearing a long coat and with a big suitcase in his hand, turns up in front of Naho. He introduces himself as "Kotaro the Dreamball Dealer" and tells Naho he can take her to a dreamland away from her everyday life. But after this encounter, strange phenomena begin to happen to Naho.
Now Naho is having fun with her friends, and several different worlds come and go before her eyes. Then she finds herself with his father and mother, only the three of them again... But as she starts feeling anxious, the next moment she finds herself wandering into Jun's dream!
Naho is confused. What would she ask to Kotaro? What does she really desire from the deep of her heart?
Air date in Japan: November 25, 2007
Format: 1 x 25
official website (Japanese only):
© Production I.G, ANIMAX