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

Tomomi Mochizuki (望月 智充, Mochizuki Tomomi, born December 31, 1958 in Hokkaidō, Japan), sometimes incorrectly romanized as Tomomichi Mochizuki, is an anime director and producer. He is married to animator Masako Gotō and sometimes uses the alias Gō Sakamoto (坂本 郷, Sakamoto Gō) when writing screenplays or working on storyboards. Known from the early 1990s as director of Ranma ½, Kimagure Orange Road and the Studio Ghibli TV movie Umi ga Kikoeru, he is also known for having directed Twin Spica, Zettai Shounen, the acclaimed World Masterpiece Theater series Porphy no Nagai Tabi, and most recently as director of the 2010 noitaminA series House of Five Leaves.

While attending Waseda University, he joined the Waseda University Animation Association. In 1981, he began working for Ajia-do Animation Works. Mochizuki made his debut one year later when he acted as production director of the 1982 series Tokimeki Tonight. He went on to direct several of the magical girl series, including Magical Angel Creamy Mami. In 1986, he moved up to chief director with Hikari no Densetsu. He currently divides his time between directing, writing scripts and acting as a series coordinator for various shows.

Selected work

Title of film in Japanese
The Cat Returns (猫の恩返し, Neko no Ongaeshi, lit. The Cat's Repayment) is a 2002 Japanese animated drama film directed by Hiroyuki Morita of Studio Ghibli. A spin-off of Whisper of the Heart, it was theatrically released in Japan on July 19, 2002 through the Toho Company and in 2003 in the United States through Buena Vista Home Video. It received an Excellence Prize at the 2002 Japan Media Arts Festival.

The story is of a girl named Haru, a quiet, shy and ditsy high school student who has a suppressed ability to talk with cats. One day, she saves a darkly-colored, odd-eyed cat from being hit by a truck on a busy road. The cat is Lune, Prince of the Cat Kingdom. As thanks, the cats give Haru gifts of catnip and mice, and she is offered the Prince's hand in marriage.

Haru meets Muta, a large white cat the voice told her to seek for directions, who leads her there to meet the Baron (the same Baron from Whisper of the Heart), who is a cat figurine given life by the work of his artist, and Toto, a stone raven who comes to life much like the Baron.

Selected related article

Title of the manga in Japanese
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (風の谷のナウシカ, Kaze no Tani no Naushika) is a manga written and illustrated by anime director Hayao Miyazaki. It tells the story of Nausicaä, a princess of a small kingdom on a post-apocalyptic Earth with a new, bioengineered ecological system, who becomes involved in a war between kingdoms while an environmental disaster threatens the survival of humankind. On her journey, she struggles to bring about a peaceful coexistence among the people of her world, as well as between humanity and nature.

The manga was serialized intermittently, from 1982 to 1994, in Tokuma Shoten's monthly magazine Animage in Japan. The individual chapters were collected and published in seven tankōbon volumes. English translations are published by Viz Media. The first sixteen chapters (approximately the first two collected volumes) of the manga were adapted by Miyazaki into his film of the same title.

In 1994, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, received the Japan Cartoonists Association Award Grand Prize (大賞, taishō), an annual prize awarded by a panel of association members, consisting of fellow cartoonists.

Selected media

Catbus cosplay (next to San taking a picture) at FanimeCon in 2010.
Credit: BrokenSphere

Catbus cosplay (next to San taking a picture) at FanimeCon in 2010.

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