Studio Ghibli fans all over the world love visiting places that remind them of their iconic anime films like Laputa: Castle in the Sky or Spirited Away. But Japanese netizens recently discovered a home in Mexico City that was not quite the ode to Hayao Miyazaki films as it seemed. At first glance, netizens thought they were looking at video evidence of the existence of soot sprites from My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away, but soon realized the horrifying truth that the home was crawling with spiders.
Mar 11, 2015
I’ve never really thought of plant pots as being particularly good gifts, and buying a flowerpot for Mother’s Day has never crossed my mind (sorry mum!) But if that planter was being pulled along by a steadfast Totoro, or came with a little Jiji the cat standing guard by the flowers, it’d probably be worth a second look.
These two new designs from Studio Ghibli merchandise store Donguri Kyouwakoku are miniature plant pots featuring adorable Totoro and Jiji figures, and they’ve just been announced for a Mother’s Day release!
Jan 20, 2015
When Studio Ghibli’s classic anime My Neighbor Totoro first screened in the U.S., more than a few people assumed the titular forest spirit must be a traditional figure from Japanese myth or folklore. Considering how well-realized the character is, and the reverence the film treats him with, it’s not surprising that some people would arrive at that conclusion, but the fact of the matter is Totoro sprang directly from the active and ample imagination of Hayao Miyazaki.
The acclaimed director did have a little real-world help creating the film’s setting though, which is said to have been inspired by a patch of Japanese forestland called Fuchi no Mori. The forest helped light a creative spark in Miyazaki, and now he’s returned the favor by volunteering in an annual conservation event that helps keep the Fuchi no Mori green and healthy.
Jan 16, 2015
While I’m not exactly a huge Disney fan, I have to say that Big Hero 6 was easily one of my favorite movies of 2014, and I’ve fast become a big fan of the bubble-like Baymax. There’s probably a mathematical formula to prove how adorable his head is, but it looks like Jin Kim, character designer for the movie, has found a way to up the awesome level by combining Hiro and Baymax with a certain iconic Japanese film…
Jan 8, 2015
When you sit down to watch a Studio Ghibli movie, there are generally three things you can expect to see depicted with unbridled passion and heart-stirring attention to detail: the thrill of flight, the glory of nature, and the mouthwatering deliciousness of expertly prepared food. As a matter of fact, scrumptious fare, ranging from extravagant delicacies to good honest grub, shows up with such frequency in Ghibli’s works that one fan counted 47 anime dishes that looked good enough to eat, then set out to make them all himself, as shown in this amazing video.
Dec 14, 2014
Remember the fun you used to have making snowmen when you were just a little sprout of a kid? Sure, your fingers would get numbed to the bone and your knees would get soaked from kneeling in the snow as you sculpted away for hours. But those little niggles were forgotten once you looked upon your finished masterpiece, before running inside to beg for some spare clothes and a carrot nose to decorate your newest frosty friend. Then he melted and you felt a little abandoned, a little lost, as though a part of your childhood had vanished, eroded like so much evaporated snow… Just me? Anyway, making stuff out of snow is awesome, and if you don’t believe us, check out this gallery of the best cute and wacky snow sculptures from China and Japan!
Dec 2, 2014
While every Studio Ghibli anime film has memorable music, the one piece that just about anyone in Japan can sing along to is “Sanpo” from My Neighbor Totoro. Meaning “A Stroll,” it opens with the lyrics, “Let’s walk! Let’s walk! I’m full of energy. Let’s keep going!”
Not exactly the most profound message, admittedly, but there’s no denying the infectious tune will get you in the mood to strap on your kicks and head out the door. And if you’re going on a walk to look for your very own local forest spirit, we can’t imagine a more appropriate set of footwear than a pair of shoes decked out with Ghibli characters.
Nov 15, 2014
As fictional (sorry, I mean completely real and definitely not made up) creatures come, furry forest spirits like Studio Ghibli’s Totoro are pretty rare to begin with. Heck, even the theme song to My Neighbor Totoro tells us that we can only see them when we’re “very young”, so it’s not like we’re tripping over the things in the street.
But if you’re the kind of person who simply must have every piece of high quality Ghibli merch, the rarer the better, then this limited edition plush is definitely one you’ll want to look out for.
Nov 10, 2014
While in Los Angeles to accept an honorary award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, famed director Hayao Miyazaki mentioned that he has a new anime in the works, giving his fans around the globe huge smiles and racing pulses.
With no production timetable yet in place, though, we’re in for a bit of a wait until we can see the new anime. No one’s sure exactly how long that wait is going to be, but it’s probably going to be long enough that maintaining the level of excitement caused by Miyazaki’s comment isn’t going to be good for your heart. So if a few deep breaths aren’t enough to calm you down, we recommend taking a few moments to relax with this adorable Totoro stuffed animal that naps and murmurs in its sleep, just like the anime film original.
Oct 30, 2014
From Totoro to Ponyo, Studio Ghibli’s characters are adored by millions of people the world over. But if those cute and cuddly creations were given a more realistic makeover would be still be quite so fond of them? If Totoro went from “Aaaaw” to “Arrrgh!” would quite so many kids insist on being tucked into a Ghibli bed-spread each night?
US artist and owner of one of the best names ever Andrew Michael Golden may be familiar to some readers for his “Videogame Characters in Real Life” series which went viral back in September this year. Well, since then he’s been hard at work bringing all of your Studio Ghibli favourites into our world.
And, goodness me, they’re eye-catching…
Although he increasingly dealt with heavy themes and narratives as his career went on, legendary anime director Hayao Miyazaki’s My Neighbor Totoro is a film of almost non-stop good vibes, with scene after scene filled with childlike whimsy, wonder, and joy. Wouldn’t it be nice to take a break from the worries of the workaday world and live inside the 1988 classic for a day?
Of course, if we’re talking animated flights of fancy, why stop at being just any character in the movie, when instead you can become Totoro himself with this lineup of Totoro apparel.
Aug 20, 2014
While the house is definitely a bit of a fixer-upper, I think most anime fans who’ve watched My Neighbor Totoro have occasional daydreams about living in the quiet, peaceful country house into which main characters Mei and Satsuki move during the movie. Of course most of us have school, work or family responsibilities that keep us from packing up our things and moving to the Japanese countryside, but wouldn’t it be nice if you could have your own little version of the Totoro house?
That’s apparently what one papercraft master thought, and after years of folding, he’s finished his remarkably accurate recreation of Studio Ghibli’s most iconic residence.
Jul 26, 2014
In Japan, there’s a long, proud tradition of drunken men drawing faces on their bellies, then contorting in order to make them appear to talk or sing. Wait, did we say proud? We mean embarrassing.
This doesn’t mean all abdominal art is automatically silly and repulsive however, as one artist is helping enhance the radiance of pregnancy by painting beautiful works of art on the stomachs of mothers-to-be.
Hidebochi has run an udon shop for 32 years and worked as a “weekend carpenter” for 52 years. But this summer, the 59-year-old undertook a different sort of construction. He decided to make Totoro for his grandchildren who just moved from Vancouver, Canada to live with him in Mihama, Mie Prefecture, Japan.
Jul 13, 2014
If you’ve spent some time in Japan, you’re probably aware that there are several things you can count on in Japanese TV — that there’ll be tons of crazy-looking commercials, there’s more than likely to be at least one channel showing footage of a reporter or celebrity eating some gourmet dish and exclaiming “Oishi! (Delicious!)” and that broadcasts of Studio Ghibli movies constantly seem to do relatively well, with a certain percentage of the population always eager to see a Ghibli film at any time. Last Friday was no exception when My Neighbor Totoro, the hit Ghibli classic loved by kids around the world, was aired on TV, and it looks like Japanese Twitter users had a great time sharing some silly parody Totoro images. Here are a few we thought we’d share with you!
While the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka is a truly whimsical place, transporting you into the magical world of animator Hayao Miyazaki and friends, an adult may feel that their immersion is incomplete. In particular, the children-only play area that features a “life-size” cat bus practically begs you to step over the velvet rope and throw the makurokurosuke in the air like a kid on a sugar high, but to do so would likely result in your ejection from the building.
But fear not! There is one other place in Japan where even grown-ups can wander happily through the imaginary world of My Neighbor Totoro: The Teddy bear Museum in Tochigi Prefecture.
May 8, 2014
Shopping for anime merchandise isn’t always as easy as you’d think in Japan. While any toy store will be stocked with goodies from currently airing, elementary schooler-targeted TV series such as Pokémon or Precure, what if your tastes run towards more sophisticated fare, like the animated classics of Studio Ghibli?
If you’re looking for stuffed animals or accessories inspired by the films of legendary anime director Hayao Miyazaki and his cohorts, you can’t go wrong with a trip to Donguri Kyowakoku, a whole chain of stores that sells nothing but Ghibli items.
Totoro, from the 1988 animated movie, “My Neighbour Totoro”, remains one of the most beloved characters to come out of the magical world of Ghibli. The story of the friendly giant who befriends a young girl in the forest is so enchanting that a trip to the woods today seems to come with the real possibility of a chance meeting with the furry animal, probably sheltering from the rain under a leaf and waiting for a new friend.
This festive season, people in Japan are using acorns to bring the magical world of Totoro into their homes and the results are adorable! From garden ornaments to wreaths, these photos show that the world under an acorn tree really is a great place to gather up some new forest friends. The fantasy is only limited by your imagination!
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