The rumors of Studio Ghibli‘s demise have been flying for a couple years, and intensified when co-founder Hayao Miyazaki announced his retirement from directing feature films. And while the Gibli documentary The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness hasn’t been officially released in the US, one sequence from the film has been floating around over the past week. In that sequence Miyazaki says “the future is clear. It’s going to fall apart. I can already feel it.” But has Studio Ghibli closed already? Nope!
No matter what a badly-translated quote said as it did the internet rounds on Sunday, the studio is still moving forward. Precisely how it will move forward is the question.
Ghibli co-founder and current general manager Toshio Suzuki has appeared on Japanese television program Jonetsu Tairiku on Sunday to talk about what the studio may do in the wake of Miyazaki’s retirement. While he said that one option would be to shut down the production department, the takeaway is that Studio Ghibli is looking into “housecleaning” or “restructuring” as it prepares for the future.
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The first trailer for the new Studio Ghibli movie When Marnie Was There was barely a trailer at all. Rather, it was more of a music video for the film’s primary song, by Priscilla Ahn. Now we’ve got a proper look at the film, in HD, via the When Marnie Was There Japanese trailer. This sets up a great deal of the story of a young girl who makes her first true friend. The only complication is that Marnie has her own unique situation.
At least, we think the trailer sets up that story. None of the dialogue is in English, so we have to rely upon an understanding of the source novel, and the exemplary visual storytelling in the footage. Being a Ghibli film — in this case, one directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi (The Secret World of Arrietty) — the animation and storytelling look to be wonderfully refined and elegant. Check out the trailer below. Read More »
We waited so long for Wong Kar-Wai‘s The Grandmaster that it’s easy to stick in the mode of thinking he’s still working on The Grandmaster. But that film has been done and out for a year and a half. We’re all free to look forward to whatever the next project from the director may be. We don’t know much about Wong’s next film, but at this point there’s a report that he is, indeed, working on something new. Read More »
Want something a little different this summer, but not too different? Ragnarok may be just the thing. The film is a big-budget action-adventure story in the Spielberg mold, but there are also shades of Godzilla as the real star is a giant beast that has lain for centuries beneath the sea. Inspired vaguely by stories of the mythological Norse end of the world, this Norwegian film stars Pål Sverre Hagen (Kon-Tiki) and Sofia Helin. Mikkel Brænne Sandemose directed from a script by John Kåre Raake. Check out the US Ragnarok trailer below. Read More »
Borgman is a strange and unsettling film that is absolutely worth watching, and now you can see the opening sequence for free. Drafthouse Films has dropped the first five minutes of the movie online in advance of the film’s NYC opening tomorrow. If you’re the sort that will be drawn in by situations that are odd, and tantalizingly unexplained, then what follows after the jump is five of the best minutes you’ll have today. Read More »
The Swedish film Force Majeure upends the disaster movie concept. A family finds its ski vacation disrupted when an avalanche threatens the mountain and lodge. And while disaster is averted on a grand scale, the brush with fear and death reveals something disturbing about the family patriarch, and creates some big problems. Check out the first Force Majeure trailer below. Read More »
This year’s Cannes Film Festival may have come and gone without a new film from Austrian director Michael Haneke (who won the 2012 Palme d’Or with Amour), but it looks like the filmmaker could hit the 2015 festival with his next film. Haneke is prepping to shoot a movie called Flashmob this summer, which means it should be rolling soon. This sounds like it is probably the culmination of ideas Haneke was toying with starting back in 2010, and we’ve got more details below. Read More »
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The Cannes prizes were handed out over the weekend, and the top award, the Palme d’Or, went to Winter Sleep, from Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan. The film is The director has visited Cannes many times before — in fact, his last five films have all taken prizes at the festival. (2003’s Distant and 2011′s Once Upon a Time in Anatolia both won the Grand Jury Prize; 2006’s Climates was awarded the FIPRESCI Prize; 2008’s Three Monkeys won Best Director.) While we don’t have a US trailer for the new film at this point, you can check out the first French Winter Sleep trailer below, and you’ll get a good taste of the film’s gorgeous imagery. Read More »