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Image from: Life of Pi (2012)
Studio Ghibli Announces Retirement of Hayao Miyazaki
Posted September 1, 2013 03:57 PM by Webmaster
Studio Ghibli president Koji Hoshino has announced that acclaimed, award-winning filmmaker and studio co-founder Hayao Miyazaki will retire following a prolific career that has spanned some fifty-two years. No formal date was set for Miyazaki's retirement, but Hoshino confirmed The Wind Rises to be the animation visionary's final film.
Miyazaki began his career in 1963 at Toei Animation, where, in 1968, he served as chief animator on director Isao Takahata's Hols: Prince of the Sun. In 1971, Miyazaki re-teamed with Takahata to co-direct fourteen episodes of the Lupin III television series. In 1979, Miyazaki would direct his first feature film: The Castle of Cagliostro, followed in 1984 by fan-favorite Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind, which remains one of his finest films.
Rising high on the critical and financial success of Nausicaš, Miyazaki co-founded Studio Ghibli in 1985, along with Takahata and Toshio Suzuki. Ghibli has since released eighteen feature films, of which Miyazaki was directly involved in eleven as director, writer and/or producer. There are currently nine Studio Ghibli films available on Blu-ray, Grave of the Fireflies being the only one not credited in some way to Miyazaki:
Miyazaki has received accolades for two films above all else, both of which have yet to arrive on Blu-ray in North America: Princess Mononoke, having earned several best director awards (among many others) and a Japanese Academy Award for Picture of the Year, and Spirited Away, a stunning coming-of-age story that garnered dozens of prestigious awards throughout the international film community, up to and including an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature at the 75th Academy Awards.
Miyazaki's final film, The Wind Rises, is set to arrive in U.S. theaters in 2014 courtesy of Disney. A Blu-ray release is expected to follow, as ultimately are the Blu-ray debuts of other key Miyazaki films, most notably Kiki's Delivery Service, Porco Rosso, Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away.
The Wind Rises Synopsis: Built on the stories of Jiro Horikoshi, visionary designer of one the most beautiful airplanes in history -- the famed Zero fighter -- and the writer Tatsuo Hori, The Wind Rises is a tale of love and perseverance in a turbulent world brought to life by the vivid animation of Studio Ghibli. Inspired by the aesthetics of design and the freedom of flying, Jiro pursues a life dedicated to the creation of a beautiful aircraft. The film covers the passage of time from Jiro's childhood, filled with dreams of engineering, to adulthood as he creates an elegant, flight worthy plane that eventually is used for something quite different than he expected, war.
My collection is all the richer for all of the wonderful Studio Ghibli films. I'm sad from a personal point of view, but I hope he enjoys a long and happy retirement. His films deserve a much wider audience in North America, and his work has positively impacted so many lives, including mine.
Miyazaki has said a number of times before that he was going to retire but at 72 I think it will stick this time. I wouldn't be surprised if Isao Takahata announces his retirement soon too as he's 77. His upcoming film Kaguya-Hime no Monogatari may also be his last.
We have lost one of the last few real visionaries in cinema. Hope his masterworks could inspire enough people to follow in his path. Here's a shout out to Makato Shinkai, it's time for him to fill a huge gap.
He is and will undoubtedly forever be a world renowned legend of animation. * Please, please Mr. Miyazaki you must release the rights of ownership and distribution here in the USA for Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away!!!
Since it got released on non-English subtitled Blu-ray in Japan, maybe his most unseen masterpiece series, Future Boy Conan, will get an English subbed or dubbed Blu-ray version in usa or the uk. The series is basically a perfect 12 hour movie.
Miyazaki could have retired after his first two or three movies and secured his place as a legend, but he kept at it for another twenty years, releasing masterpiece after masterpiece. Everyone who loves animation and great film-making owes a big "thank you" to this man. Here's hoping to a happy retirement.
Gerby doesnt have any animated films on bluray (unless you count Roger Rabbit) - other than that, he has a good collection - im just guessing that animated films arent his thing or he hasnt seen much from
I never said Miyazaki's films were rubbish, they're just not my thing, don't get all butt hurt just because my opinion differs from the rest of you, my opinion is as valid as anyone else's on here...I prefer european stop motion animation...Karel Zeman, Jan Svankmajer, Jiri Barta, Jiri Trnka, Wladislaw Starewicz etc...I find it much more interesting.
Grave of the FireFlies
The Cat Returns
From Up on Poppy Hill
Kiki's Delvery Service
My Neighbors, The Yamada's
Tales from EarthSea
The Castle of Cagliostro*
We NEED these released BEFORE his Retirement!
Otherwise Disney will screw them up even more!
I first saw Princess Mononoke upon its US theatrical release and Hayao Miyazaki easily became one of my directors of all time within a few years ó of both animated and live-action films. His films are always something to look forward to and he'll certainly be missed.
Fortunately, Studio Ghibli has other capable minds who will carry on the tradition in some way.