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ghibli heroes

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Although we already knew a Ghibli season was coming – thanks to a mini-announcement in the BFI’s February booklet –, now it’s official: the British Film Institute published a full announcement on their website yesterday, revealing that it would be screening the complete set of Studio Ghibli films over the course of two months.

Truth be told, it’s not quite complete. While we will finally get the first official London screening of Miyazaki Hayao’s「風立ちぬ」(Kaze Tachinu/The Wind Rises, Japan, 2013), Takahata Isao’s「かぐや姫の物語」(Kaguya Hime no Monogatari/The Tale of Princess Kaguya, Japan 2013) is unlikely to appear – there are rumours that the BFI has been trying to include the film on the programme, but chances are low. Although the film was released in Japan last November, it has not yet screened internationally, neither at film festivals nor in cinemas. That said, full details (dates and times) have yet to be announced for the retrospective, with the only confirmed date being the preview screening of Kaze Tachinu on April 23. A BFI Film Funday is also mentioned, featuring「千と千尋の神隠し」 (Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi/Spirited Away, Japan, 2004) and a children’s workshop for making ‘spirit-gods’.

I do wonder how hard it will be to get hold of tickets for Kaze Tachinu, it’s possible that they could sell like hotcakes, but then you never know. London is a big city, but it’s not anime-fan central. Still, I’m glad I have a BFI membership and get to buy tickets before the general public, but I even might just beg my BFI champion member friend as champions get first dibs. Of course, it wouldn’t be the end of the world not to get a London premiere ticket (though I really really really want one), as Kaze Tachinu will be released in cinemas across the UK on May 9.

The BFI has a nice little if incomplete write-up about Studio Ghibli on their website – not all films are mentioned –, giving an overview of the founding of the animation company and its oeuvre. Not mentioned are post Kaze Tachinu projects, such as the already mentioned Kaguya Hime no Monogatari,「思い出のマーニー」(Omoide no Mani/When Marnie Was There, due out this summer) and Miyazaki Goro’s TV anime 「山賊のむすめローニャ」(Sanzoku no Musume Ronia/Ronia the Robber’s Daughter, due out in the autumn).

I will be posting an update once programme details are out!

Bonus Bits

And some Studio Ghibli film reviews…. I see I have not reviewed many! Well, Omohide is another good place to go for Ghibli reviews.