The Pixar-Ghibli connection

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    A news report about the release of “Up” in Japan notes that Hayao Miyazaki’s Ghibli movies have inspired the Americans who create computer animated films for Pixar:

    A lot of the Pixar people absolutely love Miyazaki’s films and some have decorated their work space with Ghibli merchandise. One of Pixar’s biggest Ghibli fans seems to be chief creative officer John Lasseter, whose office is decked out with a ton of Totoro stuff. For his 50th birthday, Lasseter received a special gift from Miyazaki – 50 stuffed makkuro kurosuke. [The Pixar folks have also sent gifts to Miyazaki, as we can see from the Monsters Inc/Totoro portrait hanging on the wall at the Studio Ghibli HQ.]

    The report also shows some of the key differences between the way Pixar and Ghibli create their films. Miyazaki has almost total control over the entire creative process that goes into his film, while Pixar likes to engage in group brainstorming. Both result in great films, but one has to wonder what will happen to Studio Ghibli once Miyazaki is no longer able to create films. Toshio Suzuki suggests that a director like Pixar’s Pete Docter would make a fine successor to Miyazaki…

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