Based on a short film he was working on called “Kemushi no Boro,” or Boro the Caterpillar, Hayao Miyazaki now feels it is a story and project better suited for a full-length movie.
The news was dropped into a Japanese TV special broadcast over the weekend. Speaking on a NHK television program, Miyazaki talked about turning Boro The Caterpillar, a CG short he has been making for the Studio Ghibli museum in Tokyo, into a feature film. 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.
Toshio Suzuki, current head of Studio Ghibli, and producer of Miyazaki’s biggest hits, spoke during the news program about how Miyazaki has been struggling to master CG animation techniques after spending his life hand-drawing his films. “Miyazaki is a person who will keep making films until he dies…Ghibli will carry on as long as Miyazaki continues to make films.”
As far as what the movie is actually about, Miyazaki has yet to really comment, but Suzuki went on to mention that Miyazaki has been planning the story for almost 20 years and describes it as “a story of a tiny, hairy caterpillar, so tiny that it may be easily squished between your fingers.” No formal announcement about production or release date has been made apart from the usual production schedule a Ghibli (or Miyazaki) film usually takes: 4-5 years from its announcement.
Miyazaki said the film could take up to five years to make, which means that it could debut before the 2020 Olympics (making it perfect timing) and he would be 80 years old. Miyazaki is the creator of such films as Spirited Away (for which he won the very first Oscar for Best Animated Feature), Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, and Princess Mononoke. He was also honored with an Academy Honorary Award for lifetime achievement, presented at the 6th Annual Governors Awards ceremony in November, 2014.
Images: Studio Ghibli, Walt Disney Studios