Don’t be fooled by the image from Studio Ghibli’s 1989 animated adaptation of the novel of the same name by Eiko Kadono. This Kiki adaptation will be based on that book, not on the cartoon, and, in fact, Studio Ghibli is not going to be involved.
A couple of Japanese newspapers are reporting the project is underway, and set to be released next spring. It will be directed by Takashi Shimizu, and Kiki herself will be played by Fūka Koshiba, a figure skater turned actress who apparently beat out around five hundred other folks at auditions. From Anime News Network:
The accomplished figure skater (she can perform the triple loop jump) was chosen from 35,390 candidates in the “Girls Audition 2011″ competition. She then made her acting debut as the sister of actress Emi Takei (Rurouni Kenshin) in the 2012 television series Iki mo Dekinai Natsu. She was chosen from an audition of about 500 for Majo no Takkyūbin, her first film role.
Majo no Takkyūbin is the untranslated name of Kiki’s Delivery Service, though it might translate more literally to “Witch’s Delivery Service” or “Witch’s Fast Shipping,” as takkyūbin (which technically means something like “fast home delivery”) is a trademark of a Japanese shipping company. The This live action film will be based on more of the original story than the Ghibli one, which, although dear in the hearts of many, deviates significantly from the episodic nature of Kadono’s book. In the book, for example, Kiki never loses her magical powers and does not have to regain them by finding a new purpose.
(via Anime News Network.)