My other favorite of the director’s movies, My Neighbor Totoro, offers slightly more explanation for why two sisters start being visited by a forest spirit and his pals, but only slightly. A co-founder of the celebrated Studio Ghibli, Miyazaki is among animation's most acclaimed figures, celebrated for his thoughtful approach to his craft and his imaginative methods of storytelling. Besides the fact that they are all hand-drawn in detail, the drawings are also consistent and flawless. This is due to his love for the environment. Visit Insider's homepage for more stories. Everything we’ve discussed so far mixes into it — I loved the story, the characters, the animation, the emotion, the music — and made it especially potent for me, to the point that whenever I watch it, I’m taken back to that moment in time. Karen Han, entertainment reporter: These story tropes aren’t exclusive to Western media, though. Apart from Walt Disney, Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki is the most famous animator to have ever lived, his films capturing the imagination of viewers of all ages. Examples are birds , planes , flying vehicles or even flying spirits. He’s even nicknamed “The Japanese Walt Disney” but detests it as his work is original and has no relation whatsoever with Walt Disney. Media Buzz: How to look good in a media interview? With the movie now streaming on … Pretty much synonymous with Studio Ghibli, Miyazaki is probably most known for his breathtaking 2001 picture, Spirited Away . The Collected Works of Hayao Miyazaki has been sold out and restocked pretty much everywhere. Familiarity? Another significant element that can be found in his animated films is aviation. I’m especially fond of the theme that plays over the scene Tasha describes, as Chihiro and Haku fall through the sky. The River Spirit’s dragon form is animated traditionally, but still seems special because it originated in something strange. Tasha: And shout-out to No-Face, who represents the approval-craving, lonely side of all of us. Around half of the staffers surveyed identified Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away as the best Ghibli feature, the one that most impressed and spoke to them. Loss? She’s something out of a literal nightmare, the kind of dream where you see an ordinary person and realize she’s also terrifying in deep-seated ways. His most famous film "Spirited Away" (2001) was Japan's highest-grossing film on its release and won the Academy Award for best Animated Feature in 2003. There is also an essence of humanity besides the blending of physical and metaphysical space. A lot of Japanese folk tales are about not messing with things that aren’t meant for you. Tasha: That’s a particularly good point — Ghibli movies are almost always centered around big emotions like loneliness or desperation, but since so many of them center on very young protagonists, they don’t always have a romantic angle. And after watching their films, viewers are usually completely befuddled. Hayao Miyazaki Films - 1. It’s a wonderful visual design, and the way he “swims” through air is particularly striking. Who besides the biggest players really stands out for you? His films also depict some balance between fantasy and realism – not too much of either category. Born January 5, 1941 in Tokyo, Japan, Hayao Miyazaki is Japan’s Greatest Animation Director. Tasha: And the hopping lantern that makes squeaky-toy noises when it travels. She grows with each act of hard work and selflessness. So growing up in post-war Japan, he witnessed first-hand rapid modernisation. The landscapes found in his films are also exquisite. At the same time, though, she’s a businesswoman who has to keep up on her paperwork. Okay, I just squicked myself out a little, but it’s true that there’s no love so compelling as forbidden love. He ha 120 awards to his name and has been nominated 177 times. What I like most about Hayao Miyazaki’s films is his production of quality animation. The secret life of Arrietty 9. He is admired for the beauty of the animation in his films and the fact that he is emotionally honest. That’s a common opinion: Ghibli’s films have been repeatedly nominated for Best Animated Feature Oscars, but Spirited Away is the only winner. If there is a male lead, it is mostly a male who is densed. She grows as a person to save her family and friends, but she starts out just like anybody else. 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