Spirited Away Finally Coming To Blu-ray In North America

Posted by Bob Muir on Mar 26, 2015 in Anime, Cinema

Spirited Away

Ever since the first Studio Ghibli movie came out on Blu-ray, I’ve been waiting for Spirited Away to come out. It’s only been available on DVD since its US release in 2003, while it’s been available on Blu-ray in Japan since last year. That’s set to change, according to this new listing on Amazon, which official-looking box art. The Cat Returns also has a listing, helping to fill out the Blu-ray releases for their entire catalog. There are no release dates listed yet, but it’s just good to know that Disney, the official US distributor, hasn’t forgotten the second film to win Best Animated Feature. Hopefully it’s out by this summer! Read more…

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GKIDS Picks Up Last Ghibli Film For US Release

Posted by Bob Muir on Jan 15, 2015 in Anime, Cinema

When Marnie Was There

Disney has first pass at releasing Studio Ghibli’s films, but lately it seems that if Hayao Miyazaki isn’t directing, they’re not as interested. GKIDS stepped in to release From Up on Poppy Hill and The Tale of Princess Kaguya. It seems they’re doing it one more time for When Marnie Was There, the most recent and possibly last film from the famed anime studio. GKIDS is planning a spring 2015 theatrical release and the usual award submissions; the distributor also purchased the home video and TV rights, so expect a Blu-ray release later this year. Read more…

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New Trailer For The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 23, 2014 in Anime, Cinema


He means it! The upcoming documentary The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness will be particularly compelling due to Hayao Miyazaki’s recent retirement, as it goes in-depth about the making of The Wind Rises and The Tale of Princess Kaguya. It’s an amazing look at how Studio Ghibli, Miyazaki, and Isao Takahata make films. Especially since Miyazaki retired during the period the documentary covers, it’s fascinating to see the way that it affects the studio. The film is already out in Japan, but it’ll be showing in some theaters later this month, with a wide VOD release in late January. Trailer below! Read more…

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Hear The English Dub Of Princess Kaguya

Posted by Bob Muir on Sep 25, 2014 in Anime, Cinema

The Tale of Princess Kaguya

The previous US teaser trailer for The Tale of Princess Kaguya sure looked stunning, but we didn’t get to hear the movie’s English dub. But this new trailer fixes that problem, letting us hear the voices of Chloë Grace Moretz, James Caan, Mary Steenburgen, Darren Criss, and Lucy Liu. This is currently the second-to-last film from Studio Ghibli, with just one more film awaiting international release; after that, any future movies are currently uncertain as the studio has winded down production for now. Read more…



US Trailer for Ghibli’s Princess Kaguya Surfaces

Posted by Bob Muir on Aug 19, 2014 in Animation, Cinema

The Tale of Princess Kaguya

The future of Studio Ghibli is still in question, with the studio considering shifting from animation to simply managing its library. But until then, there are still two films that have been released after Hayao Miyazaki’s final film The Wind Rises but still haven’t made their way outside of Japan. The first is a movie from director Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies), The Tale of Princess Kaguya. Gkids is releasing the English dub of the movie theatrically on October 17, featuring the voices of James Caan, Mary Steenburgen, and Chloë Grace Moretz. Though there’s no dialogue in this first trailer, it does give a good example of how different the animation is from the usual Ghibli style, though it’s still unmistakably their work. Read more…



Studio Ghibli May Halt Production Of New Films

Posted by Ben Huber on Aug 4, 2014 in Anime


No, Ghibli is not dead. However, it appears that When Marnie Was There could be the final film animated in-house at Studio Ghibli — at least for the immediate future — if a planned restructuring happens. Producer Toshio Suzuki spoke on the MBS program Jounetsu Tairiku and said that the production studio is considering shutting down, as no new films are in the pipeline. Goro Miyazaki is directing a CGI TV series made by Polygon Pictures, Hayao Miyazaki has retired, Isao Takahata will probably not be making another film, and Hiromasa Yonebayashi’s Marnie didn’t do well in theaters. All of this means that (if true) Ghibli will essentially be taking a break, and the animators will be let go for now. If the studio comes up with another film to do, they may bring everyone back, or they could simply remain as a company shell solely for licensing merchandise and film rights. Time will tell! Read more…

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A New Trailer For When Marnie Was There

Posted by Ben Huber on Jul 20, 2014 in Animation, Anime


Studio Ghibli’s latest film, When Marnie Was There, has arrived in Japanese cinemas. Sadly, folks in the west will have to wait a little longer for the film, but until then, we can watch the latest trailer that features much more footage from Hiromasa Yonebayashi (who previously directed The Secret World of Arrietty). This is his second film, so I’m eagerly awaiting impressions from Japan to hear if the film is good. With Miyazaki now out of the picture (kind of), where Ghibli goes from here will be fascinating to watch. Can they cultivate the same creativity and passion Miyazaki previously delivered? It remains to be seen… but When Marnie Was There does look fascinating. Check out the trailer below. Read more…



First Trailer For Ghibli’s ‘When Marnie Was There’

Posted by Bob Muir on Jul 3, 2014 in Anime, Cinema

When Marnie Was There

Just because Hayao Miyazaki has retired from directing doesn’t mean Studio Ghibli won’t be making new films. While we’re still waiting for GKIDS to release The Tale of Princess Kaguya in the US, Ghibli’s next film is coming out on July 19, 2014 in Japan. Called When Marnie Was There, it’s based on the novel of the same name by Joan G. Robinson. It tells the story of Anna, a young girl with no friends, who meets another girl named Marnie in a house across the marsh. One day, Marnie vanishes, and a new family moves into the house. Anna soon learns there’s more to Marnie than what she thought she knew. I’m interested in seeing this, but I suppose we won’t be seeing this movie until Princess Kaguya comes out this fall. Still, it looks wonderfully atmospheric! Read more…



GKIDS Will Bring Studio Ghibli Documentary to US

Posted by Ben Huber on Jun 15, 2014 in Animation, Anime


Good news, Studio Ghibli fans! The documentary about the famous Japanese animation studio, “The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness,” will be getting a theatrical release here in the US thanks to GKIDS. The doc, directed by Mami Sunada, follows the production of the most recent two Ghibli releases, The Wind Rises (from Hayao Miyazaki) and The Tale of Princess Kaguya (by Isao Takahata). Sunada was granted unprecedented access to the studio while they toiled, getting a surprisingly up-close look at their work. It’s unusual to see such unfettered access to a Japanese studio, much less Ghibli themselves. GKIDS did not specify a release date, but did say that it will come this year. This is one that any animation fan will not want to miss. Read more…

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Disney Is Actually Releasing The Wind Rises, And Here’s The Trailer

Posted by Bob Muir on Nov 20, 2013 in Anime

The Wind Rises

I know that Disney had previously said that it would release The Wind Rises in select North American theaters on February 21, 2014 (with a wider release on February 28 and an Academy Awards-qualifying run in NYC and LA last week), but I still have a hard time believing it. Though they have the right of first refusal on all Studio Ghibli films, they had passed on their previous films From Up on Poppy Hill. And though this is the last film directed by Hayao Miyazaki, I kind of figured they’d pass on The Wind Rises due to it not only being an adult-focused film, but one that offers a semi-biographical look at the man who invented one of the most efficient planes that Japan used in WWII, something that is controversial in Asia. But luckily, they’re releasing it under Touchstone Pictures, and here’s the trailer to prove it! Read more…

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Hayao Miyazaki to Retire from Feature-Length Directing

Posted by Ben Huber on Sep 2, 2013 in Anime


At the Venice Film Festival, Studio Ghibli’s president Hoshino Koji officially announced some sad news: Hayao Miyazaki will be retiring. It was implied that Miyazaki would stick around at Ghibli to offer mentorship and possibly work on small projects, but his time on large films is over. Granted, this is not the first time Miyazaki has attempted to retire — but it’s also the first time a press conference has been held to announce it. Hoshino Koji said there will be another press conference next week to provide more details. Will The Wind Rises be Miyazaki’s final film? It sure seems that way. Miyazaki has had a long and prosperous run at Ghibli, I don’t fault him for wanting to retire now, though I will certainly miss his filmmaking. Now the real challenge: Ghibli must find suitable directors to take up the mantle. Give Hiromasa Yonebayashi another feature film! Read more…

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Ghibli Updates: Kaguya-hime no Monogatari Images and The Wind Rises Subtitled Trailer

Posted by Ben Huber on Aug 17, 2013 in Anime


There’s a lot of Ghibli goodness in the pipeline. The Wind Rises, Hayao Miyazaki’s latest feature film, is already out in Japan and doing well, but we’re only just now getting a subtitled trailer for the film. Tiff has uploaded the trailer we shared before, but now with subtitles. Also, Isao Takahata’s upcoming movie, Kaguya-hime no Monogatari, has gotten some new images on Japanese TV. It looks absolutely gorgeous, and I love the style that they’ve adapted here — it really contributes to the storybook feel of everything. Check out the videos for both after the break. Read more…

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Miyazaki’s Next Film, The Wind Rises, Looks Stunning

Posted by Bob Muir on Jul 23, 2013 in Animation, Anime, Cinema

Kaze Tachinu

Though Ghibli has put out two films in the past few years, but while both were written by Hayao Miyazaki, neither were directed by him. His first film since 2008’s Ponyo is Kaze Tachinu, or The Wind Rises. It’s based on a manga that Miyazaki made in 2009, which is loosely based on Tatsuo Hori’s short ’30s novel The Wind Has Risen. It tells the story of Jiro Horikoshi, the man designed the Mitsubishi A6M Zero plane, one of the top fighters in World War II. But from watching this four-minute trailer, the movie seems to prioritize the joy of flight over pro-war statements. Read more…

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Studio Ghibli Celebrates New Films With Giant Mural Of Past Films

Posted by Bob Muir on Jul 2, 2013 in Anime, Cinema

Ghibli Mural Header

This year, Studio Ghibli is releasing two new films in Japan — Hayao Miyazaki’s Kaze Tachinu (The Wind Is Rising) and Isao Takahata’s Kaguya-hime no Monogatari (The Tale of Princess Kaguya). Once they’re released, Studio Ghibli will have released 21 films since Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind in 1984 (which was actually pre-Ghibli, but is generally considered to be a Ghibli film), including one TV movie. To celebrate their achievement of creating some of the best animated films ever made, Ghibli made this mural for Japanese theaters. Read more…



Watch Studio Ghibli’s ‘Giant God Warrior Appears in Tokyo’ Short Film

Posted by Michael Pinto on Apr 25, 2013 in Anime, Cinema

Studio Ghibli's Giant God Warrior Appears in Tokyo

This short film was commissioned by Hideaki Anno for The Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo in 2012 as part of a special Tokusatsu exhibition. The film is directed by Shinji Higuchi and marks the first time that Studio Ghibli produced a live action film: Read more…

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Miyazaki’s Kaze Tachinu and Takahata’s Kaguya-hime no Monogatari Revealed

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 15, 2012 in Anime


Been wondering what the Ghibli folks are up to? We had heard inklings from the domain names register earlier and Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata’s comments over the past few years, but now we have official word on the next two Ghibli films. The first will be Miyazaki’s Kaze Tachinu, based on the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the designer of the Mitsubishi A6M fighter plane. Miyazaki has already done a 2-part manga series on the man, so presumably he’ll be drawing upon that and the book Kaze Tachinu by Tatsuo Hori. Isao Takahata is returning to the director’s chair as well, with Kaguya-hime no Monogatari, based on the Tale of the Bamboo Cutter. Both films will be released on the same day this summer in Japan, something that hasn’t happened since Totoro and Grave of the Fireflies in 1988. Wow! Read more…

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Titles for New Ghibli Films, GKIDS Grabs Grave of the Fireflies

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 23, 2012 in Anime, Cinema


Things have been quiet on the Studio Ghibli front, with Up On Poppy Hill out and all. We’ve known that Isao Takahata has been working on an adaption of the folk story The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, but we recently got confirmation of the title via domain name registrations from Ghibli. It’ll be titled Princess Kaguya Story (Kaguya-hime no Monogatari) and should be released sometime next year (summer, if Ghibli’s release schedule holds up). Hayao Miyazaki has also been hard at work, and his film about the man who made the Japanese Zero fighter plane has gotten a name as well: The Wind Rises. Lastly, GKIDS has picked up the distribution rights for Takahata’s Grave of the Fireflies and will re-release the film next year, just in time for the 25th anniversary. Exciting times for Ghibli fans! Read more…

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A Look at Ghibli’s Poppy Hill

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Aug 8, 2012 in Anime

The latest collaboration between Hayao Miyazaki & Studio Ghibli might lack the touch of fantasy or adventure we usually associate with their films, but that won’t keep us from appreciating the beautiful art or story. From Up On Poppy Hill tells the story of high-school romance set against the backdrop of a post World War II Japan in days leading up to the 1963 Tokyo Olympics. The film hit Japanese theaters a little over a year ago, but won’t be released domestically until next Spring. If you’re just curious as to how it looks, or what to expect, be sure to check out the trailer above. The film was directed by Miyazaki’s son, Goro, who had previously directed the 2006 Ghibli feature Tales from Earthsea based on the novels by Ursula K. Le Guin.

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Ni No Kuni Gets an English Trailer

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Apr 12, 2012 in Anime, Videogames

If you haven’t had a chance to catch this brand new English trailer for Studio Ghibli & Level 5’s upcoming role-playing epic Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, prepare to be amazed. Initially, I was a bit worried when I heard the game had been delayed until 2013, but after viewing the trailer, I’m convinced they’ve done it for the right reasons. Some things are just worth waiting for, and I wouldn’t want anyone to rush such a wonderful looking game. It’s better they take their time and really make everything shine. The voice-overs, for example,  fit so well, I’m convinced I wouldn’t want to settle for a Japanese language track, and subtitles. The game is still scheduled to ship sometime in the first quarter of next year for PS3. Hopefully someone plans to pick up its DS counterpart at some point.

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Complete Studio Ghibli Restrospective Running at the IFC Center

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 9, 2011 in Anime

Studio Ghibli image by JDMarkette

Given the reputation of Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli as a whole, it’s sometimes surprising how little theatrical attention is given to their work. Read more…

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Namco Bandai to Publish Ghibli RPG Ni no Kuni Internationally

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Oct 18, 2011 in Videogames

Ni no Kuni

For those of you who’re still upset at Nintendo’s decision not to publish Xenoblade domestically, but happen to also own a PS3, here’s some welcome news. Namco Bandai has announced plans to publish the upcoming PS3 release of Level-5 ‘s Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch in both North America and Europe next year. As you can probably guess just by looking at it, the game is a collaboration between Level-5 and much-renown Studio Ghibli, responsible for such films as Kiki’s Delivery Service, Howl’s Moving Castle, Spirited Away, and more. While the project never included any contributions by director Hayao Miyazaki, the art itself is very reminiscent of the style found through-out the various films Ghibi has worked on, his included. That said, it’s quite striking visually and I’m sure Ghibli’s involvement will help bolster sales.

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Miyazaki Gets Some Lego Love

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Jun 9, 2011 in Animation, Hobbies and Collections

Miyazaki meets Lego 1

Feast your eyes on these awesome Miyazaki-inspired Lego models. They’re not quite as epic as the Minecraft maps we showed you last month, but designer Iain Heath did a fantastic job recreating a bit of Ghibli’s magic. They were originally displayed at last year’s BrickCon Exhibition in Seattle.  Personally, I love his Totoro, and I really dig the little Japanese garden he built for the exhibit. For more images, check out his full gallery on Flickr.

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Minecraft Meets Ghibli

Posted by Tim Sheehy on May 19, 2011 in Animation, Videogames

I’ve seen people use Minecraft to create all kinds of awesome maps, but I’ve never seen anything quite like this. Not even the Enterprise-D built to scale could hold a candle to these. The video depicts a number of maps based on the various animated works of Studio Ghibli. You’ll recognize scenes and locations from films such as Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, and Laputa: Castle in the Sky, all of which seem masterfully crafted. i can’t imagine how much time and effort was spent constructing these maps, but they’re all really impressive.

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If Only They’d Give Totoro His Own Game

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Dec 22, 2010 in Animation, Videogames

Ni no Kuni trailer 1

I’m surprised we haven’t really brought this up yet, but I imagine some of you haven’t already heard about the upcoming Level-5/Studio Ghibli collaboration, Ni no Kuni. You can expect the classic art and animation we’ve come to expect from Ghibli, looking very much like your standard Miyazaki fare, and Level 5’s previous titles have proven the studios ability to seamlessly blend animation and 3D using beautifully rendered cell-shaded visuals.

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