Hayao Miyazaki’s My Neighbor Totoro is a classic. The movie has inspired generations of audiences, and has left an indelible mark in the animation industry as a whole. However, it seems that it has a sequel which premiered in 2003. Sadly, many fans don’t seem to know about it.
Titled “Mei and the Kittenbus”, the anime serves as a sequel for the classic. The story follows Mei’s adventure through the woods where she once again meets the Totoros, as well as a cute Kittenbus. And yes, Hayao Miyazaki is also the one who directed it, and he even voiced the old purple catbus in the image above. The anime really flew under the radar of most avid Ghibli fans, many of whom admitted they were shocked to know it even existed.
— とある (@33kitta) October 10, 2017
But if Miyazaki himself directed it, why didn’t an overwhelming number of fans know about it? It’s simple really, and this is because the movie is really a Ghibli Museum-exclusive short film. It runs for 14 minutes, and it never really had a home video release.
Most Ghibli fans know about the studio’s films from cinemas and home video releases, so having only the Ghibli Museum exclusively show it in Japan has really become a big reason why many fans haven’t even heard about “Mei and the Kittenbus”. But now, it seems that Ghibli is screening the movie once again. From November 1-30, the Ghibli Museum will be exclusively showing the short film to visitors. Yeah, it’s still a Ghibli exclusive, but at least a few more fans now know about it, right?