'Young Director' to Helm Studio Ghibli's Work in 2011
posted on by Egan Loo
Studio Ghibli has confirmed in a "Ihira Yōko no Tōhō Senden Caravan Report" ("Yōko Ihira's TOHO Publicity Caravan Report") this month that its next major work — after this summer's Karigurashi no Arrietty (The Borrower Arrietty) film — will be a 2011 work helmed by a "young director."
Studio Ghibli President Koji Hoshino said in July of 2008 that there is a likely chance that Ghibli will promote one of its own animators to direct a film or recruit a director from outside the studio. Studio co-founder Hayao Miyazaki himself told his studio's staff in November of that year that they will start two feature-length works, with young staffers at their core, over the next three years. 36-year-old animator Hiromasa Yonebayashi is making his directorial debut in the first of those two features, Karigurashi no Arrietty. Arrietty will open on July 17.
In addition, Studio Ghibli revealed during a February 2008 press conference that "directors [Isao Takahata] and [Hayao Miyazaki's son] Goro Miyazaki are both developing works" for release after Miyazaki's Gake no Ue no Ponyo (Ponyo on a Cliff), which opened in Japan in 2008. Producer Toshio Suzuki predicted last October that Miyazaki's next feature film might open in four years.
Ihira also reported in her caravan report that advanced ticket sales for Arriety will begin on April 17. Early ticket buyers will receive one of two books — either a collection of early character sketches, or a collection of background sketches for the scenes set under the floorboards. (The film revolves around the "little people" who live underneath the floorboards of a western Tokyo home.)
Arriety's theme song singer and French musician Cécile Corbel is planning a concert, participating in the film's publicity starting on July 1, and participating in a rock festival in August. The public television network NHK is already shooting a behind-the-scenes documentary similar to Ponyo's, while a second program will cover Corbel's concert.
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