Rising Animator Asaho Takagi Debuts with Short Film “First Love’s Fragrance,” Featuring Music by Sakura Fujiwara

Tokyo, Japan – Comics Wave Film (CWF), the acclaimed animation studio behind hits like “Your Name” and “Suzume no Tojimari,” proudly announces the release of “First Love’s Fragrance,” a short animation directed by the up-and-coming animator Asaho Takagi. This film, set to premiere on May 20th, features an original song by renowned singer-songwriter Sakura Fujiwara.

A New Talent Emerges

Asaho Takagi, known for her work on popular animations, steps into the director’s chair for the first time with “First Love’s Fragrance.” The story, woven around the bittersweet memories evoked by the scent of a scarf, is brought to life through Takagi’s unique artistic vision. The animation promises to capture the coquettish charm of its female protagonist, a theme central to Takagi’s creative direction.

A Collaboration of Visuals and Melody

The creation of “First Love’s Fragrance” was a collaborative effort between Takagi and Fujiwara, whose music perfectly complements the film’s nostalgic essence. Takagi, an admirer of Fujiwara, sought her out for the project, resulting in a poignant fusion of animation and song. Fujiwara’s new song was crafted specifically for the film, embodying a heartfelt perspective of a girl experiencing the pangs of lost love.

Takagi and Fujiwara engaged in numerous discussions to ensure that both the animation and the music resonated deeply with the audience. The result is a rich, emotional tapestry that invites viewers to relive their own memories of first love.

A Unique Production Approach

CWF adopted an unconventional production methodology for this project, favoring a small, dedicated team over traditional section-based workflows. This approach allowed for a more intimate and passionate creation process, with each frame reflecting the collective enthusiasm of the team.

『初恋のにおい』場面カット Ⓒ CWF / AMUSE / Tiny Jungle Records
『初恋のにおい』場面カット Ⓒ CWF / AMUSE / Tiny Jungle Records

Film Details

  • Director: Asaho Takagi
  • Music: “First Love’s Fragrance” by Sakura Fujiwara (lyrics and composition)
  • Animation Studio: Comics Wave Film
  • Premiere URL: Watch Here (Premiering on Sakura Fujiwara’s official YouTube channel on May 20, 2024, at midnight)

Director’s Note

“Asaho Takagi commented, ‘I always wanted to depict Sakura’s delicate yet powerful voice in my work. Thanks to her beautiful song, both the visuals and music have surpassed my expectations, creating a dazzling experience. I hope this film brings a touch of healing to everyone who watches it.'”

Artist’s Note

“Sakura Fujiwara shared, ‘Takagi’s charmingly expressive heroine instantly made me want to embrace her tenderly. I hope everyone can feel the nostalgic warmth and bittersweetness of first love through this film.'”

About the Creators

Asaho Takagi

Born in Aichi Prefecture, Takagi has contributed to major animations like “Doraemon the Movie: Nobita’s Treasure Island” and “Weathering with You.” Notably, she handled key animation and prop design for “Suzume no Tojimari.” She also served as character designer and chief animation director for the Pokémon WCS 2023 anime commercial, “Meeting You!”

Sakura Fujiwara

Hailing from Fukuoka, Fujiwara (born in 1995) is a multi-talented singer-songwriter, radio DJ, and actress. Known for her distinctive smoky voice, she attracts listeners with its unique allure, making her stand out among female vocalists.

For more information and updates, visit the Comics Wave Film website.

『初恋のにおい』場面カット Ⓒ CWF / AMUSE / Tiny Jungle Records
『初恋のにおい』場面カット Ⓒ CWF / AMUSE / Tiny Jungle Records
Jun Satō
Jun Satōhttps://medium.com/@jun_49322
Editor of art, style and current news at MCM. Contact: jun (at) martincid.com
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