Hideaki Anno Says He Expected Miyazaki's Return From Retirement
posted on by Jennifer Sherman
Evangelion and Shin Godzilla director Hideaki Anno, background art studio Deho Gallery founder Nobuo Kawakami, and Mary and The Witch's Flower producer Yoshiaki Nishimura appeared at a special event for the upcoming film on Saturday. Amidst discussion of background art, Anno commented on Hayao Miyazaki's return from retirement to work on a proposed new anime feature film.
Anno laughed as he said, "It's just as I thought." In response to Studio Ghilbi hiring animators for Miyazaki's "final" feature film, Kawakami said, "Ghibli's started producing again. I was expecting it, though."
For most of the event, the speakers critiqued the background art in Studio Ponoc and Hiromasa Yonebayashi's Mary and The Witch's Flower anime film, which will open in Japan on July 8. Anno said of the film, "The depictions of rooms are good." However, he suggested that Yonebayashi could have done a bit more with the wallpaper and used more variation. Anno believes that the film marks an important step in Yonebayahshi's career, and he has a promising future.
Miyazaki officially announced his retirement from the production of feature-length films in 2013. However, the NHK television special Owaranai Hito Miyazaki Hayao (The Man Who Is Not Done: Hayao Miyazaki) revealed in November that the acclaimed director is working on a proposed new anime feature film.
Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki then revealed in April that Miyazaki's next work, the CG short "Kemushi no Boro" (Boro the Caterpillar), will debut at the Ghibli Museum in Tokyo in July. However, the Ghibli Museum's schedule lists an earlier short, "Treasure Hunting," in July. The website does not yet list screenings for "Kemushi no Boro."
After that, Suzuki firmly denied that Miyazaki can release his next proposed feature film in 2019. Miyazaki is drawing the storyboards for the project now, and has been since last July. However, Suzuki then said that Miyazaki has only drawn 20 minutes of storyboards so far, which is not a good sign of progress toward the previously proposed 2019 date.
Suzuki demurred from revealing the feature's title, saying, "I can't tell you." When asked if Miyazaki can finish the film while the director is still alive, Suzuki replied, "Hmm, I don't know."
The studio is hiring animators on a three-year contract starting on October 1 for the film.