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Totoroooooo. Love this image. Makes me grin from one ear to the other.

Updates, updates… of the “oh yay!” kind although you will have to practice some patience also. Some of these news bits are actually from a while ago, but I wasn’t, umm, being too attentive.

Studio Ghibli Retrospective: Seattle, Washington from June 22-July 5, 2012

Dates and details for the Studio Ghibli Retrospective’s stop in Seattle are available now. The  SIFF Cinema Uptown will be showing 15 films – the usual suspects (i.e. more or less the same programme as for earlier stops on Ghibli’s US tour). Although the exclusion of the studio’s most recent productions is easily explained (one only screened in North American theatres a few months ago, for the other distribution rights have only just been acquired – see also below), I do always wonder about the absence of 火垂るの墓 (Hotaru no Haka/Grave of the Fireflies, 1988). Maybe the worry is that – given its gloomy subject matter – it wouldn’t be commercially viable? I can only guess.

The full programme is available here – you can book already too!

US Release of コクリコ坂から (Kokuriko-zaka Kara/From up on Poppy Hill, 2011)

There is also news for Kokuriko-zaka Kara. GKids announced on June 6th that it had acquired the distribution rights for the film (plus several other, non-Ghibli animated features) in the North America. According to Variety “GKids will qualify ‘Poppy Hill’ for 2013’s Academy Awards and plans a March release” – yes, dear American readers, you heard that right. March, as in March 2013. I feel for you, even more so as I am predicting that the UK release is, after the London premiere of Kokuriko-zaka Kara at the Terracotta Film Festival in April and a special preview during the BFI’s Anime Weekend Showcase last weekend right around the corner.

…and ももへの手紙 (Momo e no Tegami/A Letter to Momo, 2011)

However, while you impatiently await Kokuriko-zaka Karayou might be able to catch Momo e no Tegami, which is not a Studio Ghibli film but could very well be one. Animenewsnetwork.co.uk reports that Momo e no Tegami has also been acquired by GKids, with plans to screen it in US theatres by the end of 2012. (Still no news on the UK release by the way.)

Bonus Bits:

Studio Ghibli reviews on Otherwhere:

Not nearly enough, I know! (Note to self: get onto reviewing the rest of the Ghibli catalogue.)

I am also working on the review for ももへの手紙 (Momo e no Tegami/A Letter to Momo, 2011), which I was lucky enough to see at the BFI Anime Weekend Showcase – should be (long) done by the time the film is released in North America!