Studio Ghibli’s General Manager, Toshio Suzuki, has recently announced that the animation feature film production department might be shut down, in order to take a brief pause to regroup and re-assess where the company will be moving towards in the future.
It may have come to a surprise for many, however, it is no secret that the company has been struggling financially over the years.
With the recent retirement of co-founder Hayao Miyazaki late last year, who personally wrote the screenplay and directed most of their box office successes, Studio Ghibli had lost one of their key personnel, who can be said to have built the company from the ground up.
It can be said that Miyazaki is one of the most influential animators of all time, and is comparable to Walt Disney. Given their financial situation, and the loss of such an important and amazing person, it comes to no surprise that Studio Ghibli would think of taking some time off to assess their situation.
Studio Ghibli has crafted some of the greatest animated movies that we all know and love, such as My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Momonoke, Howl’s Moving Castle, and of course, who can forget the adventures of Chihiro in Spirited Away?
If Studio Ghibli really does shut down it’s feature film department, it will truly affect the animated film industry as a whole, and many of us will be mourning its loss.
Studio Ghibli has recently released The Wind Rises globally, and will soon be releasing The Tale of Princess Kaguya in North America on October 27, 2014. Their latest, and possibly last Animated Feature Film, When Marnie Was There, has just been released in Japan on July 17, 2014. It’s global release is to be scheduled.
Even if the studio were to stop producing feature films, let us all not forget the beautiful stories that Studio Ghibli has given us. Their work should be solidified in history as one of the world’s best, and they should be given due credit to the impact they have had on the world of animation.
Writer: Foo Bo Mun