If you’ve been keeping up with Ghibli movies in the past few years, you might know that the studio we all know for classics like My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away is coming out with a new movie called When Marnie Was There.
Or maybe you’ve been living under a rock and you have absolutely no idea that Ghibli’s been releasing new movies since the last one you watched.
If that last one is you, here’s an article to bring you up to speed–all about the new movie Marnie and a quick recap of Ghibli’s movies since 2008 that might have flown under your radar.
When Marnie Was There
Film distributor TOHO announced its 2014 lineup on Thursday, and revealed that Studio Ghibli’s next film will be an adaptation of Joan G. Robinson’s English children’s novel classic When Marnie Was There (Omoide no Marnie) next summer. Hiromasa Yonebayashi is returning to direct his second film after 2010’s The Secret World of Arrietty.
A summary of the book:
Anna hasn’t a friend in the world – until she meets Marnie among the sand dunes. But Marnie isn’t all she seems…An atmospheric ghost story about friendship, families and loneliness. Sent away from her foster home one long, hot summer to a sleepy Norfolk village by the sea, Anna dreams her days away among the sandhills and marshes. She never expected to meet a friend like Marnie, someone who doesn’t judge Anna for being ordinary and not-even-trying. But no sooner has Anna learned the loveliness of friendship than Marnie vanishes…
And the trailer:
What is most remarkable about Marnie is that this will be the first Studio Ghibli film without the involvement of either of its co-founders, the ubiquitous Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata. Miyazaki’s last film was The Wind Rises, which was released in 2013, and Takahata’s was The Tale of Princess Kaguya, which was also released in 2013. Marnie was done by Ghibli veterans, but not with Miyazaki or Takahata’s guidance, which has lead every other film from Ghibli since its conception.
If you have absolutely no idea what The Wind Rises or The Tale of Princess Kaguya is, then here’s a quick look in the recent past.
2008: Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea (Gake no ue no Ponyo)
Ponyo (崖の上のポニョ Gake no Ue no Ponyo, literally “Ponyo on the Cliff”), initially titled in English as Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea, is a 2008 Japanese animated fantasy film written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli and Toho. It is Miyazaki’s eighth film for Ghibli, and his tenth overall. The plot centers on a goldfish named Ponyo who befriends a five-year-old human boy, Sōsuke, and wants to become a human girl.
2010: The Secret World of Arrietty (Karigurashi no Arietti)
Arrietty, titled The Borrower Arrietty (借りぐらしのアリエッティ Kari-gurashi no Arietti) in Japan and The Secret World of Arrietty in North America, is a 2010 Japanese animated fantasy film directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and scripted by Hayao Miyazaki and Keiko Niwa. It is based on The Borrowers by Mary Norton, an English author of children’s books, about a family of tiny people who live secretly in the walls and floors of a typical household, borrowing items from humans to survive. The film stars the voices of Mirai Shida, Ryunosuke Kamiki, Shinobu Otake, Keiko Takeshita, Tatsuya Fujiwara, Tomokazu Miura and Kirin Kiki, and tells the story of a young Borrower (Shida) befriending a human boy (Kamiki), while trying to avoid being detected by the other humans. Toshio Suzuki produced the film and Studio Ghibli provided the animation.
2011: From Up on Poppy Hill (Kokurikozaka kara)
From Up on Poppy Hill (コクリコ坂から Kokuriko-zaka Kara, lit. “From Coquelicot Hill”) is a 2011 Japanese animated drama film directed by Gorō Miyazaki, scripted by Hayao Miyazaki and Keiko Niwa, and produced by Studio Ghibli. It is based on the 1980 serialized Japanese comic of the same name illustrated by Chizuru Takahashi and written by Tetsurō Sayama. The film stars the voices of Masami Nagasawa, Junichi Okada, Keiko Takeshita, Yuriko Ishida, Jun Fubuki, Takashi Naito, Shunsuke Kazama, Nao Omori and Teruyuki Kagawa.
Set in 1963 Yokohama, Japan, the film tells the story of Umi Matsuzaki, a high school girl living in a boarding house, Coquelicot Manor. When Umi meets Shun Kazama, a member of the school’s newspaper club, they decide to clean up the school’s clubhouse, Quartier Latin. However, Tokumaru, the chairman of the local high school and a businessman, intends to demolish the building for redevelopment and Umi and Shun, along with Shirō Mizunuma, must persuade him to reconsider.
2013: The Wind Rises, The Tale of Princess Kaguya
The Wind Rises (Kaze Tachinu)
The Wind Rises (風立ちぬ Kaze Tachinu) is a 2013 Japanese animated historical drama film written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, and is animated by Studio Ghibli. It was the final film directed by Miyazaki before his retirement in September 2013. The film is a fictionalized biography of Jiro Horikoshi (1903–1982), designer of the Mitsubishi A5M and its successor, the Mitsubishi A6M Zero; both aircraft were used by the Empire of Japan during World War II. The film is adapted from Miyazaki’s manga of the same name, which was in turn loosely based on the 1937 short story The Wind Has Risen by Tatsuo Hori.
The Tale of Princess Kaguya (Kaguyahime no monogatari)
The Tale of Princess Kaguya (かぐや姫の物語 Kaguya-hime no Monogatari) is a 2013 Japanese animated film produced by Studio Ghibli, and directed and co-written by Isao Takahata, based on the folktale The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter. This is Takahata’s fifth film for Studio Ghibli, and his first in 14 years since his 1999 feature, My Neighbors the Yamadas.
The film follows the protagonist, Princess Kaguya, from her infant years to adulthood in the human world. It also explores the “crime” she committed prior to the events of the film.