Laika has given us some of the most beautiful animated films in recent memory, including 2014's hit ‘The Boxtrolls.’ Today the studio has announced its next animated endeavor, ‘Kubo and the Two Strings.’ The Japanese-inspired film was written by the guys behind ‘ParaNorman,’ and will feature a fantastic voice cast—including Matthew McConaughey, Charlize Theron, and Ralph Fiennes.

According to a press release sent out by the studio, production is set to begin in Laika’s next animated feature, ‘Kubo and the Two Strings,’ which also marks the directorial debut of Laika President and CEO Travis Knight. The film will employ the studio’s “innovative 3D stop-motion and CG hybrid technique,” and was written by ‘ParaNorman’ writers Chris Butler and Marc Haimes. We also got our first peek at the new project via some lovely concept art, which you can view in full below.

‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ is being described as a “sweeping, swashbuckling adventure set in a mythical ancient Japan,” and the voice cast is incredibly exciting: Matthew McConaughey, Ralph Fiennes, Charlize Theron, Rooney Mara, Brenda Vaccaro, and Art Parkinson (aka Rickon from ‘Game of Thrones,’ who has a bit of downtime right now, we imagine).

The release goes on to describe the exceptionally fantastical plot:

In the epic fantasy, scruffy, kindhearted Kubo ekes out a humble living while devotedly caring for his mother in their sleepy shoreside village. It is a quiet existence – until a spirit from the past catches up with him to enforce an age-old vendetta. Suddenly on the run from gods and monsters, Kubo’s chance for survival rests on finding the magical suit of armor once worn by his fallen father, the greatest samurai the world has ever known. Summoning courage, Kubo embarks on a thrilling odyssey as he faces his family’s history, navigates the elements, and bravely fights for the earth and the stars.

The above synopsis definitely sounds epic and rather ambitious, and we can’t wait to enjoy Laika’s next project. ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ is scheduled to hit theaters on August 19, 2016. Until then, enjoy this little peek:


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