Madman to Screen Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata Theatrical Showcase in Australia

posted on by Jon Hayward
Showcase celebrating the works of Studio Ghibli filmmakers, Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata to tour Australia from October;

The Tale of Studio Ghibli Poster
Madman Entertainment have announced they will be touring "The Tale Of Studio Ghibli Showcase: Celebrating The Genius Of Hayao Miyazaki And Isao Takahata" from October around Australia. The tour will consist of four films from Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata and two documentaries. Two of the films are Studio Ghibli's more recent releases, Isao Takahata's The Tale Of The Princess Kaguya and Hayao Miyazaki's The Wind Rises. They will be screened alongside two films made 25 years ago by the pair that cemented Studio Ghibli's reputation, Isao Takahata's Grave of the Fireflies and Hayao Miyazaki's My Neighbour Totoro.

The Kingdom Of Dreams And Madness and Isao Takahata And His Tale Of The Princess Kaguya are the two documentary films that will accompany the showcase.

All the films will be screened as Japanese audio with English subtitles, The Wind Rises and The Tale Of The Princess Kaguya will have additional screenings with their respective English dubs.

Madman announced the showcase via press-release and their facebook and website.

The seasons will be as follows and you can view Madman's trailer for the showcase below;

  • October 9 - 22
    • Melbourne / Cinema Nova
    • Sydney / Dendy Newtown
    • Canberra / Dendy Canberra
    • Brisbane / Dendy Portside
  • November 6 - 19
    • Perth / Luna Leederville
  • November 27 – December 10
    • Adelaide / Palace Nova East End

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya
© 2013 Hatake Jimusho – GNDHDDTK

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya is based on the famous Japanese folktale Taketori Monogatari (The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter), which centers on a princess named Kaguya who was discovered as a baby inside the stalk of a glowing bamboo plant. The film was directed at Studio Ghibli by co-founder Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies, My Neighbours the Yamadas) from a screenplay he wrote in collaboration with Riko Sakaguchi. Animation director Kenichi Konishi (Tokyo Godfathers) was also responsible for the character designs and the music was composed by Joe Hisaishi. The film won the Animation Film Award at the 68th Mainichi Film Awards.

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya premiered in Japan in November 2013 and sold over 222,822 tickets in 452 cinemas on its opening weekend earning 284,252,550 yen (approximately $2.98 million AUD). As of the beginning of February 2014 the film has made a total of 2,313,602,733 yen (about $24,320 million AUD) and in March the distribution company GKIDS announced that they would release The Tale of The Princess Kaguya in North America later in the year. You can view GKids recently released English teaser trailer here.

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya was first screened in Australia at the Sydney Film Festival and at the Melbourne International Film Festival last month.

The Tale of The Princess Kaguya will be screened in both Japanese language with English subtitles and English language dub.

Isao Takahata And His Tale Of The Princess Kaguya
© 2013 WOWOW

Isao Takahata And His Tale Of The Princess Kaguya

Description from Madman Entertainment;

A fascinating and insightful behind-the-scenes glimpse at the creation of Isao Takahata's The Tale of The Princess Kaguya. With complete access to the film's production, we are privileged to witness Takahata as he uncovers the process by which he came to take on the project, the recording of the character voices, the establishment of ‘Ghibli Studio 7’ (a facility set up to meet the demands of a new type of animation that does not fit easily into the traditional Ghibli animation process), the recording of the music with legendary composer Joe Hisaishi, and even a rare meeting between Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki during the production of The Wind Rises.
Grave of the Fireflies Screenshot
©1988 Akiyuki Nosaka/Shinchosha Co.

Grave of the Fireflies

Set during the final days of World War II, 14-year-old Seita and his 4-year-old sister Setsuko are orphaned after an air raid kills their mother. The film follows Seita and Setsuko as they struggle to survive, first with their Aunt and later by themselves.

This Studio Ghibli title from 1988 is based on the 1967 semi-autobiographical novel by Japanese novelist Akiyuki Nosaka. Directed and scripted by Isao Takahata (Pom Poko, My Neighbors the Yamadas), Grave of the Fireflies also has animation direction and character designs by Yoshifumi Kondô (Kiki's Delivery Service), art direction by Nizo Yamamoto (Castle in the Sky, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time) and music by Masahiko Satoh and Michio Mamiya.

Madman originally announced a Blu-ray and DVD release for Grave of the Fireflies during AVCon 2014 but at that time stated the release would be in the near future. In the meantime Grave of the Fireflies was screened as part of the Sydney Film Festival 2014.

Madman Entertainment confirmed at SMASH 2014 that Grave of the Fireflies will be released on DVD and Blu-ray in November 2014.

The Wind Rises Screenshot
© 2013 Nibariki – GNDHDDTK

The Wind Rises (Kaze Tachinu)

A semi-biographical film following the (fictional) life of Jiro Horikoshi, The Wind Rises follows Jiro as he dreams of flying beautiful aeroplanes. However due to his eyesight Jiro cannot fly, so after inspirational dreams of famous Italian aeronautical designer Caproni he turns to designing and creating airplanes. The film covers Jiro's childhood through to his creation of the Mitsubishi A5M (the predecessor to the A6M Zero fighter plane for WWII) and the historical events in-between including the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, The Great Depression and Japan's decent into war.

The Wind Rises is based on Hayao Miyazaki's 2009 mini-manga of the same name itself based on Tatsuo Hori's 1938 novel, The Wind Has Risen. Miyazaki is credited with both directing and creating the screenplay at Studio Ghibli with animation direction and character design by Kitaro Kousaka (Whisper of the Heart, Spirited Away) and music by frequent Miyazaki collaborator Joe Hisaishi.

The Japanese voice cast includes Evangelion director Hideaki Anno as main character Jirō Horikoshi alongside former idol Miori Takimoto as Naoko Satomi, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Masahiko Nishimura, Steve Alpert, Morio Kazama, Keiko Takeshita, Mirai Jita, Jun Kunimura, Shinobu Ōtake, and Mansai Nomura.

Disney released the film in North America, and Studio Ghibli International produced the English-language dub starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emily Blunt with producer Frank Marshall (From Up on Poppy Hill, The Secret World of Arrietty, Ponyo).

The Wind Rises topped Japan's box office for 2013 taking in over ¥12 billion to date ($130 million AUD). Joe Hisashi has been short listed in the Oscars for best score and The Wind Rises has also been nominated for the Golden Globe's best foreign language film.

This will be Hayao Miyazaki's last film as director due to his retirement.

The Wind Rises originally had its Australian and New Zealand theatrical release in February this year.

The Kingdom of Dream and Madness (Yume to Kyōki no Ōkoku)

The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness is a documentary film directed by Mami Sunada (Ending Note: Death of a Japanese Salaryman) followed as she looks inside Studio Ghibli by following Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata as they direct The Wind Rises and The Tale of Princess Kaguya respectively alongside producer Toshio Suzuki as he works on both projects.

Mami Sunana stated that when she was approached to direct the project she was moved and considered the project a honor. She then began to delve deeper into just why it was an honor to be involved with the Ghibli directors and producer. According to those involved, Sunada seemed as invisible as air as she filmed the actions of the staff in the Ghibli office, letting them proceed with their work with no interruption.

Sunada also explained why she put the word "Madness" in the title of the film:

I think that having a dream entails having a bit of madness, no matter what the profession. There are times when you will go to extremes, and times when you are feared by others for that.

The film originally opened in Japan on the 16th of November 2013, GKids have licensed the film in the United States and Canada. The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness originally screened in Australia as part of the Melbourne International Film Festival in August.

My Neighbor Totoro Screenshot

My Neighbor Totoro

My Neighbor Totoro follows two young girls, Mei and Satsuki as they move to a new home in the countryside. Mei and Satsuki are finding the move especially hard as their Mother remains hospitalised due to illness, however the girls discover unusual creatures in their house and befriend the strange neighbors who live in forest that surrounds them.

Hayao Miyazaki produced My Neighbor Totoro alongside Isao Takahata as he was working on Grave of the Fireflies and the two films shared a double bill when originally released to Japanese theaters in 1998. The film has a score by Joe Hisaishi alongside character design by Yoshiharu Sato (Before Green Gables) under art direction from Kazuo Oga (Wicked City, The Tale of the Princess Kaguya).

Madman have released My Neighbor Totoro on DVD since 2006 and on Blu-ray from 2012 with the Disney English dub. This showcase will only be screening the original Japanese audio with English subtitles.

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