GKids has announced during the Annecy Animation Film Festival that they have picked up Mami Sunada’s The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness, a Studio Ghibli documentary for distribution to hit theaters in the US later this year, and may coincide with the release of The Tale of Princess Kaguya.
The Studio Ghibli documentary focuses on the three heads of Studio Ghibli Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata and Toshio Suzuki as they rush to complete The Wind Rises and The Tale of Princess Kaguya (they have yet to release an official date on either film).
Now that both Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata have announced their retirement as directors, this film will be our last chance to have a look at their processes and the studio as a whole as they have always shied away from public exposure.
Aside from Hayao Miyazaki’s biographical books Starting Point and Turning Point (which is more of a collection of interview translated transcripts and the occasional pre-production essay by the director himself), there isn’t much out there in terms of either the studio’s or the directors’ choices, so this documentary on Studio Ghibli will undoubtedly be an eye opener and inside look at what it is exactly that makes the studio tick.
Granted near-unfettered access to the notoriously insular Studio Ghibli, director Mami Sunada follows the three men who are the lifeblood of Ghibli – the eminent director Hayao Miyazaki, the producer Toshio Suzuki, and the elusive and influential “other director” Isao Takahata – over the course of a year as the studio rushes to complete two films, Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises and Takahata’s Princess Kaguya. The result is a rare “fly on the wall” look at the inner workings of one of the world’s most celebrated animation studios, and an insight into the dreams, passion and singular dedication of these remarkable creators.