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Catbus with Satsuki inside

Catbus (ネコバス, Nekobasu) (referred to in the film as ねこのバス, Neko no basu) is a fictional supporting character in the Studio Ghibli film My Neighbor Totoro, directed by Hayao Miyazaki. It is a large, grinning, twelve-legged cat with a large bushy tail and a hollow body that serves as a bus, with windows and seats covered with fur. The character's popularity has led to a spinoff short film,[1] toys for children, an art car, and an exhibit in the Ghibli Museum. Catbus is believed to be based on the Japanese bakeneko (化け猫, “changed cat”), an ancient urban legend where cats that grow old learn to shapeshift. In the original Japanese version of My Neighbor Totoro, Catbus is voiced by Naoki Tatsuta, whilst in the Disney English release, Catbus is voiced by Frank Welker, and by voice actor Carl Macek in the Streamline Pictures release.

Character description[edit]

The Catbus, a character in My Neighbor Totoro, is depicted as a fantastical combination of feline and bus attributes. It features a large, wide-grinning cat head, twelve legs resembling those of a cat, complete with sharp claws, and a bushy tail. The body of the Catbus is designed to resemble a bus, with a framework that includes a hollow interior lined with fur-covered seats and a shape-shifting door for passenger boarding. The eyes of the Catbus function as headlights, and it has mice with glowing eyes positioned on its upper front, serving as taillights. The fur of the Catbus is orange with brown stripes adorning its back, forehead, legs, sides, and tail. Within the context of My Neighbor Totoro, the Catbus possesses the ability to appear and disappear at will, and can travel to any destination desired by its passengers.[2]


Other references[edit]

  • The velvet worm species Eoperipatus totoro, discovered in 2007, was named by the scientists because of its resemblance to the Catbus.[7][8][9]
  • In the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, Japan, there is an exhibit of a large plush Catbus, which can be played with and entered by children 12 years and under.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Miyazaki, Hayao, Mei to Koneko basu (Animation, Short, Adventure), Hayao Miyazaki, Chika Sakamoto, Studio Ghibli, retrieved 2023-11-17
  2. ^ My Neighbor Totoro. Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, Studio Ghibli, 1988.
  3. ^ "Black Rock City, Nevada - Photos from Burning Man 2002". www.misterw.com. Retrieved 2023-10-10.
  4. ^ "Persona 5 players are praising the games witty nod to Studio Ghibli". Polygon. 7 April 2017. Retrieved November 24, 2017.
  5. ^ Limited, Alamy. "Catbus Totoro équipe compétitive dans la Red Bull Soapbox Race 2019 à Alexandra Park, Londres, UK. Sautant par-dessus les gens avec rampe Photo Stock - Alamy". www.alamyimages.fr (in French). Retrieved 2023-10-10.
  6. ^ Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino (2006-09-19). Book 1: Water, Box Set (DVD).
  7. ^ Philip Kendall (21 August 2013). "From cameos to creepy-crawlies: 15 little-known facts about Studio Ghibli movies". Rocket News 24. RocketNews24 / Socio Corporation. Retrieved 29 August 2013.
  8. ^ Ivan Radford (30 May 2013). "25 awesome true facts about My Neighbour Totoro". i-flicks.net. Archived from the original on 2013-09-24. Retrieved 29 August 2013.
  9. ^ Oliveira Ide S, Schaffer S, Kvartalnov PV, Galoyan EA, Palko IV, Weck-Heimann A, Geissler P, Ruhbergh H, Mayer G (2013). "A new species of Eoperipatus (Onychophora) from Vietnam reveals novel morphological characters for the South-East Asian Peripatidae". Zoologischer Anzeiger. 252 (4): 495–510. doi:10.1016/j.jcz.2013.01.001.
  10. ^ Takai, Shinichi. "Welcome! - Ghibli Museum, Mitaka". www.ghibli-museum.jp. Retrieved 2022-03-08.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]