Portal:Studio Ghibli

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Founded in June 1985, Studio Ghibli is headed by the directors Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata and the producer Toshio Suzuki. Prior to the formation of the studio, Miyazaki and Takahata had already had long careers in Japanese film and television animation and had worked together on Hols: Prince of the Sun and Panda! Go, Panda!; and Suzuki was an editor at Tokuma Shoten's Animage magazine.

The studio was founded after the success of the 1984 film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, written and directed by Miyazaki for Topcraft and distributed by Toei Company. The origins of the film lie in the first two volumes of a serialized manga written by Miyazaki for publication in Animage as a way of generating interest in an anime version. Suzuki was part of the production team on the film and founded Studio Ghibli with Miyazaki, who also invited Takahata to join the new studio.

The studio has mainly produced films by Miyazaki, with the second most prolific director being Takahata (most notably with Grave of the Fireflies). Other directors who have worked with Studio Ghibli include Yoshifumi Kondo, Hiroyuki Morita, Gorō Miyazaki, and Hiromasa Yonebayashi. Composer Joe Hisaishi has provided the soundtracks for most of Miyazaki's Studio Ghibli films. In their book Anime Classics Zettai!, Brian Camp and Julie Davis made note of Michiyo Yasuda as "a mainstay of Studio Ghibli’s extraordinary design and production team".

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Selected profile

Hayao Miyazaki at the 2009 San Diego Comic-Con.
Hayao Miyazaki (宮﨑 駿, Miyazaki Hayao, born January 5, 1941) is a Japanese film director, animator, manga artist, illustrator, producer, and screenwriter. Through a career that has spanned six decades, Miyazaki has attained international acclaim as a masterful storyteller and as a maker of anime feature films and, along with Isao Takahata, co-founded Studio Ghibli, a film and animation studio. The success of Miyazaki's films has invited comparisons with American animator Walt Disney, British animator Nick Park, and American director Steven Spielberg. He is considered one of the most popular and influential animators in cinema.

Born in Bunkyō, Tokyo, Miyazaki began his animation career in 1963, when he joined Toei Animation. From there, Miyazaki worked as an in-between artist for Gulliver's Travels Beyond the Moon, working in various roles in the animation industry until he directed his first feature film, Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro, released in 1979. After the success of his next film, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind in 1984, he co-founded Studio Ghibli, where he continued to produce many feature films.

While Miyazaki's films have long enjoyed both commercial and critical success in Japan, he remained largely unknown to the West until Miramax Films released Princess Mononoke (1997). Princess Mononoke was the highest-grossing film in Japan until it was eclipsed by another 1997 film, Titanic, and the first animated film to win Picture of the Year at the Japanese Academy Awards. Miyazaki's next film, Spirited Away (2001), topped Titanic's sales at the Japanese box office, won Picture of the Year at the Japanese Academy Awards, and was the first anime film to win an American Academy Award.

Miyazaki's films often contain recurrent themes, like humanity's relationship with nature and technology, feminism, and the difficulty of maintaining a pacifist ethic. The protagonists of his films are often strong, independent girls or young women. Miyazaki's newest film, The Wind Rises, was released on July 20, 2013 and screened internationally in February 2014. Miyazaki announced on September 1, 2013 that this would be his final feature-length film.

Selected work

Title of film in Japanese
Only Yesterday (おもひでぽろぽろ, Omohide Poro Poro, lit. "memories come tumbling down") is a 1991 Japanese animated drama film written and directed by Isao Takahata, based on the manga of the same title by Hotaru Okamoto and Yuko Tone. Toshio Suzuki produced the film and Studio Ghibli provided the animation. It was released on July 20, 1991. The ending theme song (愛は花、君はその種子 'Ai wa Hana, Kimi wa sono Tane', lit. "Love is a flower, you are its seed") is a Japanese translation of Amanda McBroom's composition "The Rose."

Only Yesterday is significant among progressive anime films in that it explores a genre traditionally thought to be outside the realm of animated subjects, in this case a realistic drama written for adults, particularly women. The film was, however, a surprise box office success, attracting a large adult audience of all genders.

The plot follows Taeko, a 27 year old, unmarried, OL who has lived her whole life in Tokyo and now works at a company there. She decides to take another trip to visit the family of the elder brother of her brother-in-law in the rural countryside to help with the safflower harvest and get away from city life. While traveling at night on a sleeper train to Yamagata, she begins to recall memories of herself as a schoolgirl in 1966, and her intense desire to go on holiday like her classmates, all of whom have family outside of the big city.

Selected related article

Gauche the Cellist (セロ弾きのゴーシュ, Sero Hiki no Gōshu, also transliterated Gorsch the Cellist or Goshu the Cellist) is a short story by the Japanese author Kenji Miyazawa. It is about Gauche, a struggling small town cellist who is inspired by his interactions with anthropomorphized animals to gain insight into music. The story has been translated into English, Italian and Spanish, and was adapted into a critically acclaimed anime in 1982 by Isao Takahata. It had previously been adapted to the screen several times.

Gauche is a diligent but mediocre cellist who plays for a small town orchestra The Venus Orchestra (金星音楽団, Kinsei Ongaku Dan) and the local cinema in the early 20th century. He struggles during rehearsals and is often berated by his conductor during preparations for an upcoming performance of Beethoven's Sixth Symphony (the Pastoral Symphony). Over the course of four nights, Gauche is visited at his mill house home by talking animals as he is practicing.

Selected media

Hideaki Anno and Ryūsuke Hikawa (Meiji University) participating in "The World of Hideaki Anno" at the Tokyo International Film Festival on October 30, 2014.
Credit: Dick Thomas Johnson

Hideaki Anno and Ryūsuke Hikawa participating in "The World of Hideaki Anno" at the Tokyo International Film Festival on October 30, 2014.

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Categories

Wikipedia: Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind · Studio Ghibli (animated films, people· Ni no Kuni · Topcraft
Commons: Studio Ghibli · Cosplay (Howl, in the US, Kiki, Mononoke, Nausicaä, Porco, Totoro· Films (Howl, Kiki, Laputa, Mononoke, Nausicaä, Ponyo, Porco, Spirited Away, Totoro, The Wind Rises), Museum · People (Gorō Miyazaki, Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata)

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