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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Howl's Moving Castle (ハウルの動く城 Hauru no Ugoku Shiro)
is a 2004 Japanese animated fantasy film
scripted and directed by Hayao Miyazaki
. The film is based on the novel of the same name
by English writer Diana Wynne Jones
. The film was produced by Toshio Suzuki
, animated by Studio Ghibli
and distributed by Toho
. Mamoru Hosoda
, director of one episode and two movies from the Digimon
series, was originally selected to direct but abruptly left the project, leaving the then-retired Miyazaki to take up the director's role.
The film had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival on September 5, 2004, and was released in Japanese theaters on November 20, 2004. It went on to gross $190 million in Japan and $235 million worldwide, making it one of the most financially successful Japanese films in history. The film was later dubbed into English by Pixar's Peter Docter and distributed in North America by Walt Disney Pictures. It received a limited release in the United States and Canada beginning June 10, 2005 and was released nationwide in Australia on September 22 and in the United Kingdom the following September. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature at the 78th Academy Awards in 2006.
Wynne Jones's novel allows Miyazaki to combine a plucky young woman and a mother figure into a single character in the heroine, Sophie. She starts out as an 18-year-old hat maker, but then a witch's curse transforms her into a 90-year-old grey-haired woman. Sophie is horrified by the change at first. Nevertheless, she learns to embrace it as a liberation from anxiety, fear and self-consciousness.
Ni no Kuni (二ノ国, literally Second Country, also called The Another World) is a role-playing video game, developed by Level-5 for the Nintendo DS and later the PlayStation 3. The Nintendo DS version, titled Ni no Kuni: Dominion of the Dark Djinn (二ノ国 漆黒の魔導士 Ni no Kuni: Shikkoku no Madōshi, literally Second Country: The Jet-Black Mage), was released on December 9, 2010, while the PlayStation 3 version, titled Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch (二ノ国 白き聖灰の女王 Ni no Kuni: Shiroki Seihai no Joō, literally Second Country: The Queen of White Sacred Ash), was released in Japan on November 17, 2011, with a Western release on January 22, 2013.
Both versions of the game (DS and PS3) were critically acclaimed, with many critics praising its graphic design and its unique gameplay which combines traditional Japanese RPG combat with more fast-paced Western RPG combat. The game won multiple "Best RPG" awards, with the DS version getting slightly better reviews than its PlayStation 3 counterpart.
The North American and European PlayStation 3 versions are published by Namco Bandai Games and include both English and Japanese voice tracks. Due to problems in translating and distributing the magic book outside of Japan, the Nintendo DS version was not localized. Despite this, a collector's edition of the PlayStation 3 version that contains the translated book was released alongside the standard edition.
Short film releases
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Anniversaries and events
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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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