It’s not exactly been a big secret that Studio Ghibli, makers of fine animated films such as Spirited Away and My Neighbour Totori, have been working on two new feature-length movies for 2013: Kaze Tachinu and Kaguya Hime no Monogatari.
The titles of these two films were first unveiled last month when the Tokyo-based animation studio registered domain names for the unannounced films, according to SlashFilm and Ghibliblog. At the time, neither Studio Ghibli nor Toho (the films’ distributor in Japan) were ready to announce any details.
But since Studio Ghibli co-founder and famed director Hayao Miyazaki previously did a two-part manga mini-series entitled Kaze Tachinu (The Wing Rises), longtime anime fans quickly made the connection.
As for Kaguya Hime no Monogatari, well, that’s the Japanese title for a well-known 10th century folktale over there. The folktale is also known as The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter or Taketori Monogatari (竹取物語).
Today at an event held in Toho’s headquarters in Hibiya, Tokyo, the two Studio Ghibli flicks were officially unveiled for the first time.
Kaze Tachinu was just exactly what everybody thought, an anime film adaptation of Miyazaki’s manga series of the same name, about the life of Jiro Hirokoshi (an actual person) – the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II (from IMDB). The movie is director Hayao Mizayaki’s first new film project in five years, after 2008’s Ponyo or Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea (崖の上のポニョ), and seen as a comeback to the cinema world from the veteran director.
Kaguya Hime no Monogatari, on the other hand, will be directed by Isao Takahata, who has been gradually working on the conceptualisation of this Japanese folklore for several years now. This will be his first film directing credit in 14 years, after My Neighbour the Yamadas (ホーホケキョとなりの山田くん) in 1999.