In a surprise development, Makoto Shinkai has announced that he is directing a new animated film titled Suzume no Tojimari. Produced by CoMix Wave Films and Toho, the movie will open in Japanese theaters on 15 November 2022. In addition to being director and screenplay writer, Shinkai also drew the key visual below which features a young girl and was designed by Masayoshi Tanaka.

Shinji Orito is providing the music and Takumi Tanji serves as art director. Story and character design is handled by Masayoshi Tanaka, animation direction by Kenichi Tsuchiya, sound direction by Jin Aketagawa, coloring by Eunyoung Choi at Colorido and editing by Yumi Seya at Orange.

Shinkai, who has been producing anime since the OVA Voices of a Distant Star in 2002, last directed Weathering With You which opened on 18 July 2018. The film became the highest-grossing Japanese movie ever in China with ¥6.67 billion (~US$61.4 million) and topped the box office charts in Japan during its first two weekends.

Shinkai's other works include 5 Centimeters Per Second, The Garden of Words, Children Who Chase Lost Voices from Deep Below, Your Name. and their respective sequels. The Garden of Words was nominated at the 86th Academy Awards for Best Animated Short Film. Children Who Chase Lost Voices from Deep Below earned him his second consecutive win at the Tokyo Anime Award in 2011. Your Name., meanwhile, became Japan's highest-grossing anime movie and the seventh highest-grossing Japanese film ever with ¥30 billion (~US$273 million).Your Name. was released in North America by Funimation, who also handled the home video release, dubbing and distribution for other overseas distributors. A live-action film adaptation will open in Japan on 26 August this year with Takahata Isao serving as director and Musashi Koyama providing character designs. Shinkai is not involved with the new project.