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While the original manga is set in 19th century England, this new film is set more than 130 years later in 2020, in an Asian city where Western and Asian cultures freely intermingle. Since only males can take the reins of the Phantomhive family, a young woman named Shiori dons male clothes and the name Kiyoharu Genpō to lead the massive Phantom Corporation.
The world Shiori lives in is divided between East and West, and she works as an intelligence operative (nicknamed the Queen's Watchdog) for the Queen of the Western nations, who is trying to unite the world. The Queen tasks Shiori to solve a "consecutive mummified mysterious deaths incident" as well as an incident of the disappearance of a few women. Before long, Shiori manages to discover a "black invitation" that ties the two incidents together, but that invitation leads her to a world she should not have entered, and she is cornered into a dilemma.
The film stars Hiro Mizushima (Zettai Kareshi - Kanzen Muketsu no Koibito Robot) as Sebastian, a demonic "super butler" with impeccable knowledge, manners, grace, cooking skills, martial arts, looks, and more.
Ayame Gōriki plays Sebastian's new master Shiori. Like the master Ciel in the original manga, Shiori has a seal in her right eye as a symbol of her contract with Sebastian. Sebastian watches over and protects Shiori, but at a price — he consumes her soul.
Rounding out the cast are Mizuki Yamamoto as the maid Lin, Yuka as Shiori's aunt Hanae, and fashion model Louis Kurihara as the undertaker Jay. The cast will also include Masatô Ibu, Goro Kishitani, and Yuu Shirota. This will be the first time since Beck three years ago that Mizushima is starring in a film. Mizushima previously played another eminently capable butler inspired by a manga series, Mei-chan no Shitsuji.
Kentaro Otani (NANA) and Keiichi Satou (Tiger & Bunny, Karas, Asura) are co-directing the film, which began shooting in April. Tsutomu Kuroiwa (Liar Game: The Final Stage, Liar Game 2, Strawberry Night) is writing the film's script.The film will open in Japan on January 18.
The manga debuted in Square Enix's Monthly G Fantasy magazine in 2006, and its 17 volumes thus far have 16 million copies in print, including those published in 42 countries and territories. The manga already inspired a television anime series in 2008, a television anime sequel in 2010, and a stage play in 2009.
The manga received the top prize in the shōnen manga category of France's Japan Expo Awards in 2010 and the Best International Manga Award in Germany's Animagic in 2011. Yen Press will release the 15th volume in the series in North America on October 29.