Animation Studio Ghibli has announced its first release in 2014, which also marks their first movie without anime legend Hayao Miyazaki, who announced his retirement earlier this year from feature filmmaking. The first project is based on British author Joan G. Robinson’s children’s book “Marnie”, entitled Omoide no Maanii (When Marnie Was There), and will be directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi.
The original story is about a a young girl named Anna, sent away by her foster parents to the Norfolk countryside where she meets a mysterious girl named Marnie. Studio Ghibli announced their new project when they unveiled their new website on Friday, showing a single still image of the movie poster. Yonebayashi previously directed “The Secret World of Arrietty”, a film that has the distinction of being the highest grossing Ghibli film that is not directed by Miyazaki. The script will be co-written by him and Masashi Ando, who previously worked with him on Arriety and was also a character designer in two major Miyazaki movies, “Princess Mononoke” and “Spirited Away.”
Studio Ghibli released two films in 2013: Miyazaki’s last movie, “The Wind Rises” which has earned $120 million in the box-office in Japan alone and has also been nominated for several awards, including Best Foreign Language Film in the Golden Globes. The other film they released is “The Tale of Princess Kaguya” by studio co-founder Isao Takahata, which has also gained acclaim for its unique look but has not fared as well in the domestic market.
[ via Variety ]