Hayao Miyazaki, Studio Ghibli’s co-founder and the director of such wonderful films as Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, Kiki’s Delivery Service and My Neighbour Totoro, will retire following the premiere of his latest film The Wind Rises.
According to The Guardian, Miyazaki will make an official statement this week in Tokyo, as Studio Ghibli president Koju Hoshino stated “He wants to say goodbye to all of you.”
Miyazaki previously announced his retirement following Princess Mononoke, but returned to direct Spirited Away. He came out of retirement again to finish work on Howl’s Moving Castle, and subsequently directed Ponyo in 2008. The Wind Rises screened at the Venice Film Festival over the weekend and is “a fictionalised biography of Jiro Horikoshi, who designed Japanese fighter planes during the second world war.”
If this is the final retirement for Miyazaki, it’s sad news for cinema but an excellent excuse to revisit the work of a true artist. We will definitely be digging out our Studio Ghibli films.