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Unico (Sanrio, 1979-83)

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Lady Zephyrus appears to the demon Beezle
Source: Movie
Layers: 1
No sketches available
Cel Number: A32
Oversize, 14W x 9H

No Background

Added 2/22/2018
Unico Movie, (1981), Episode 2, cut 425I, according to the note on the top of the cel. The first and shorter episode in this film shows Unico befriending Beezle, “the demon of solitude” just before the world is set to end. But before this happens, the Spirit of the South Wind takes Unico to another time and place, leaving the demon to face extinction by himself.

That scene ends the bittersweet final chapter of the manga, but in the movie Tezuka gives this story a happier ending. Zephyrus, seeing that Unico and Chao have gotten themselves in a real fix with Baron Danshaku in the “Cat on a Broomstick” episode, returns to the end of time and seeks out Beezle. She then agrees to carry him back in time into the world of the second adventure, where the demon can repay the debt of friendship that he owes the little unicorn.

This cel of Zephyrus, beautifully hand-painted on the front and extensively airbrushed on the back, comes from the scene in which she first appears to Beezle. Sequence number: A32.

(Approximate screen cap)

An enlarged detail of her face and body, entirely hand-traced in color on the front of the cel sheet, is added in the thumbnail. This artwork, as the screen cap shows, never could have been appreciated by audiences, even on the large screen of a movie theater.

Trivia point:I first read the cut notation on the top of the cel as “2-4251,” but even long anime films ran no longer than just over 1000 cuts, so this is an impossible number. However, my other two Unico movie cels come from the start of the “Cat on a Broomstick” episode and are marked “2-53” and “2-113.” This one comes from a scene toward the climax of this adventure, so it must be cut 425, with the last character being a capital letter “I.” That letter might indicate that it was separately photographed from the Beezle cel and background, and later combined with them through a special effect in post production.

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Curator: 60something-sensei
Gallery Created: 8/3/2002
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