Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children[a] is a 2005 Japanese computer-animated film directed by Tetsuya Nomura, written by Kazushige Nojima, and produced by Yoshinori Kitase and Shinji Hashimoto. Developed by Visual Works and Square Enix, Advent Children is part of the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII series of media, which is based in the world and continuity of the highly successful 1997 role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII. Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children was released on DVD and Universal Media Discs with Japanese voice acting in Japan on September 14, 2005, and on April 25, 2006, with English voice acting in North America and the UK.
Advent Children takes place two years after the events of Final Fantasy VII and focuses on the appearance of a trio that kidnaps children infected with an unexplained disease. Final Fantasy VII hero Cloud Strife, suffering from the same disease, goes to rescue the children. He discovers that the trio plan to resurrect the villain Sephiroth using the remains of the extraterrestrial villain Jenova, and he and his compatriots from the game fight to stop them. The film's voice acting cast includes Takahiro Sakurai, Ayumi Ito, and Toshiyuki Morikawa in Japanese, and Steve Burton, Rachael Leigh Cook, and George Newbern in English.
The film has been released in multiple versions; Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete, released on Blu-ray Disc in 2009, is the last version and adds 26 minutes of new and expanded scenes to the 101-minute original. The film has received mixed reviews. Critics have praised its animation and CGI work. Still, the plot has been criticized as incomprehensible to viewers who did not play Final Fantasy VII and a thin connection between action scenes. It received the "Maria Award" at the Sitges Film Festival in 2005 and the "Best Anime Feature" at the 2007 American Anime Awards. The original release was one of the best-selling animated movies in Japan and the United States in its release year. The Complete release was noted as driving a large increase in sales of the PlayStation 3 console in its release week. By May 2009, the DVD and Universal Media Disc releases had sold over 4.1 million copies worldwide.