Fruits Basket - Prelude - Is Getting Released In Theaters This Summer By Crunchyroll

The story of "Fruits Basket" is not over yet.

A "special event" prequel film titled "Fruits Basket – prelude -" is being released this summer, bringing the equal turns heartbreaking and heartwarming saga of Tohru Honda and the cursed Sohma family to an end. Better yet, "Fruits Basket – prelude -" is receiving a special theatrical release in select movie theaters in the United States and Canada this June, courtesy of Crunchyroll.

The 2019 "Fruits Basket" anime was an acclaimed adaptation of Natsuki Takaya's wildly popular shoujo manga of the same name, following a 2001 anime adaptation that ended before Takaya's manga had finished its story. As such, the 2001 anime — while fondly remembered by many a shoujo anime fan — was seen as an imperfect adaptation, dialing back some of the more somber topics that Takaya's manga tackled such as domestic abuse, mental illness, and childhood trauma, in favor of a more slice-of-life romance meets slapstick comedy approach. The 2019 "Fruits Basket" anime more than rectified this, offering a loyal adaptation of Takaya's manga that was stirring, moving, and visually stunning — while giving longtime fans the romantic resolution they'd long craved (Kyo Sohma, I can FIX you). 

But while the anime wrapped up the story of its resilient heroine Tohru Honda, there's still one story left to tell: the story of Tohru's parents, Kyoko and Katsuya Honda. Which is where "Fruits Basket – prelude -" comes into play.

The untold story of Fruits Basket - prelude -

"Fruits Basket – prelude -" tells the story of Kyoko Honda and how she fell in love with Katsuya, Tohru's father who had died when she was young and who never makes an appearance in the anime show proper (apart from one shadowy memory). In the manga, the story is told in a series of flashbacks from the point of view of Kyo, who reveals that he knew Kyoko long before he met and fell in love with Tohru.

Kyo's recollection of Kyoko's story takes place in the middle of a particularly angsty episode for Kyo (though let's be honest, when isn't he angsty?) as he grapples over his love for Tohru while having sadly resigned himself to a life of imprisonment after high school. Kyoko's love story plays in parallel with Kyo's internal struggle, as he recalls meeting Kyoko when he was young, the two of them striking up a connection as fellow lonely souls. He learns of how Kyoko was a troubled teenager who fell in with a gang in middle school, and whose romance with Katsuya, who (in a queasy detail that I'm sure will get lots of discourse) was her middle school TA.

The decision to spin off Kyoko and Katsuya's story into its own "special event film" makes sense — it's mostly divorced from the rest of the plot — but I will miss it adding more of our understanding of Kyo as the story began to reach its emotional climax. And while I won't go too long into the age-gap discourse that is sure to arise from this film, I did like the added level of complexity and humanity that it gave to Kyoko, who had until that point had always had a near-angelic flawless presence, having died right at the start of the story. But having loved the 2019 anime and how it elevated and modernized the manga — and with the anime world currently suffering from a dearth of good shoujo anime — I trust "Fruits Basket – prelude -" will do justice by the characters. 

Watch the trailer for Fruits Basket - prelude -

Read the synopsis for "Fruits Basket – prelude -" below.

Before there was Tohru and Kyo – there was Katsuya and Kyoko. Discover the turbulent beginning of Tohru's mom's dark past, and the man who breathed new hope into her. Watch the evolution of their love story and the birth of the Honda family, as this chapter completes the full adaptation of the heartwarming Fruits Basket story.

"Fruits Basket -prelude-" is written by Taku Kishimoto ("Fruits Basket," "Haikyu!!"), with character design by Masaru Shindō ("Fruits Basket"), art direction by Tamako Kamiyama, and music composed by Masaru Yokoyama ("Fruits Basket," "Your Lie in April"). It will arrive in select movie theaters in the United States and Canada on June 25, 28, and 29, subtitled and dubbed in English. Tickets go on sale Friday, June 3.