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Hayao Miyazaki Hints at Return to Feature Filmmaking

TOKYO – Legendary Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki has hinted about a return to feature filmmaking.

Speaking on a NHK television program, Miyazaki talked about turning “Boro The Caterpillar” (“Kemushi no Boro”,) a CG short he has been making for the Studio Ghibli museum in Tokyo, into a feature film.

He said that he has shared a proposal with Toshio Suzuki, veteran producer at Studio Ghibli, which has been Miyazaki’s creative home for three decades. “I haven’t said anything to my wife yet,” Miyazaki confessed. “When I do, though, I’m ready die in the middle (of production).” No formal announcement about production or release date has been made.

Now 75, Miyzaki announced his retirement from feature film-making in September 2013, following the summer release of his last feature to date, the WW2-themed “The Wind Rises.”

On the program Suzuki said that Miyazaki has been “battling with CG” in the new project, a departure from the hand-drawn style of animation he used throughout his career. “Miyazaki is a person who will keep making films until he dies,” Suzuki commented. “Ghibli will continue as long as Miyazaki continues to make films.”

There was a five-year gap between “The Wind Rises” and Miyazaki’s previous film as a director, the 2009 “Ponyo.” If Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli work at their regular pace the new film would appear in 2021, when the director turns 80.

Among Miyazaki’s many honors is an Academy Honorary Award for lifetime achievement, presented at the 6th Annual Governors Awards ceremony in November, 2014.

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