For anime fans, there isn’t anything that can look like the works of Studio Ghibli.
The small team of animators here has spent years creating great moments, bringing stories of adventure, love and friendship through countless hand-drawn frames. From My Neighbor Totoro come Howl’s Moving CastleEach of the above enchanting movies allows us to all be immersed in this magical fantasy world.
Studio Ghibli is established by animators, directors, producers, screenwriters, authors and manga artists Hayao Miyazaki; Movie director Isao Takahata; and manufacturer Toshio Suzuki. During the past 37 years, they have created 20 feature films (and continue to increase), along with several short films and TV commercials. Let’s iDesign Discover the history and future of the legendary animation studio through this interesting article.
The Beginning of Studio Ghibli
Takahata and Miyazaki They first met in the 1960s when the two were working for Japanese animation studio Tôei Dôga. They worked together for over a decade, but it wasn’t until the mid-1980s that they decided to start their own business. In 1985 – with the sponsorship of Tokyo-based Tokuma Shoten publishing company – Takahata, Miyazaki and Suzuki founded Studio Ghibli, a small production studio in the suburbs of Tokyo.
The first movie of the trio is Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, a post-apocalyptic fantasy adventure based on the manga of the same name published by Miyazaki. Released under the name Tokuma Shoten, it was a success and prompted this small group to begin producing their next stories. In 1986, Studio Ghibli released Laputa: Castle in the Sky, a story about an orphan boy and a peasant girl who embarks on a journey to discover the mysterious floating city of Laputa.
Unlike other animation studios at the time, Studio Ghibli was not initially interested in international commercial success. Producers absolutely want to use their art to explore the depths of the human experience and tell poetic, emotional stories. Without the traditional villains, even Ghibli’s “bad guys” are somewhat lovable, each with their own storyline explaining their own behavior.
Why is it called Studio Ghibli?
The name “Ghibli” refers to the Italian word meaning “Hot Sahara”. This name is appropriate because the studio wants to “blow a new breath into the anime industry”. The name also refers to Miyazaki’s love for Italy and airplanes. He was inspired by the Caproni Ca.309 Ghibli, a surveillance aircraft designed in Italy during World War II.
The most famous Ghibli movie
Studio Ghibli has produced 15 of the highest-grossing animated films in Japan. Although My Neighbor Totoro is arguably Ghibli’s most widely recognized film (even its emblem features a lovable Totoro character), the studio’s first real success was Kiki’s Delivery Service. Premiered in 1989, the film became the number one hit in theaters in Japan that year. Three years later in 1992, Porco Rosso surpassed both Disney classics, Beauty and the Beast at the Japanese box office. Then in 2003, Ghibli’s iconic film Spirited Away became the first non-English-speaking film to win an Academy Award for Best Animation. This is the first film to reach $ 200,000,000 in sales before its US premiere, Spirited Away has become the highest-grossing film ever released in Japan.
In 1988, Ghibli released Grave of the Fireflies, one of the studio’s most beautiful works, based on Akiyuki Nosaka’s heartbreaking (semi-autobiographical) short story about two kids struggling to survive in World War II. two. Surprisingly, the film was only moderately successful at the Japanese box office as it was now seen as too jarring for young audiences. However, Grave of the Fireflies later received critical acclaim and was even rated 100% on Rotten Tomatoes (a website that aggregates American film and television reviews). .
What’s next for Studio Ghibli?
Although Miyazaki announced his retirement in 2013, he has yet to show signs of quitting. Miyazaki retired in 2017 to work on the adaptation of Diana Wynne Jones’s novel Earwig and the Witch. In addition, the legendary animator is working on a new project based on the Japanese novelist Genzaburō Yoshin, titled How Do You Live? Released in 2023, the film tells the story of a young boy facing poverty. In May 2020, Suzuki (currently the production director of Studio Ghibli) announced that 60 animators are currently working on the film. I said, “We’re still hand-drawing everything, but it’s taking longer to finish a movie because we’re drawing more frames.”. Suzuki also revealed that he had to accept a deal with Netflix to fund the project.
If you want to know more about the history of Studio Ghibli, you can visit the Ghibli Museum, located in Mitaka, Tokyo. And if you’re excited to watch one of the studio classics, you can now find Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro and many more Ghibli movies on Netflix.
Translator: Nam Vu