Ghibli Co-Founder Takahata's 6-Decades Old Production Notes Discovered
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
Takahata is a reowned animation director whose body of work includes classics like Grave of the Fireflies, Anne of Green Gables, Pom Poko, and My Neighbors the Yamadas. He passed away in April 2018 at the age of 82. Since his death, a large number of notes were found in his home and were handed over to the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo for research.
The notes include Takahata's ideas for Taketori Monogatari (The Tale of the Bamboo-Cutter), the myth that was central to Takahata's final motion picture The Tale of the Princess Kaguya. Takahata intended to use the notes on the story as part of a proposal to present to the animation company he worked at at the time. The notes included his intent to animate the work using a method similar to emakimono (Japanese hand scrolls). The use of music was central to his idea.
Notes about Takahata's first directorial work Horus - Prince of the Sun were also discovered. The notes are thought to have been shared with the staff to illustrate the relationships between the characters and their way of thinking. He also introduced a workflow pattern for staff on the film and a plan to "democratize" an anime production so a larger number of staff could share ideas and participate in the creative process.
Takahata's notes will be on display at the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo as part of the Isao Takahata Exhibition that opens on July 2.