Until now, only five Studio Ghibli films were available on Blu-ray in North America, all courtesy of Walt Disney Studios. An many fans are already aware, Grave of the Fireflies was not one of the titles that Disney acquired the home video distribution rights to following the Disney-Tokuma deal in the late 1990's. Due to this fact, many fans wondered if the title would ever be released on Blu-ray in North America after the initial release in Japan earlier this year. The fact that Sentai Filmworks announced a North American Blu-ray release only a few months following the Japanese release was a welcome surprise not only to anime fans, but also fans of the HD format in general.
As reported previously, Sentai Filmworks has included a brand new English dub produced by Seraphim Digital on this release. The new English voice cast includes Adam Gibbs as Seita, Emily Neves as Setsuko, Shelley Calene-Black as the children's mother, Marcy Bannor as their aunt, and various additional actors whose names will probably be familiar to frequent anime viewers.
As far as picture and sound quality go, the North American Blu-ray release features a 1080p high definition video transfer with the original Japanese audio track and new English dub presented in DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0. The Japanese audio track can be selected with or without subtitles, depending on the viewer's preference. The original 1998 English dub, as featured on the previous home video releases of the film, is also included as a selectable track. Special features include a Japanese theatrical trailer, storyboards, and deleted scenes storyboards.