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!
Dec 2, 2013
Tsutsuki, near Yokohama, is making waves in the Japanese media for its unassuming highway that, when viewed from the right angle at night, forms the vague silhouette of Hayao Miyazaki’s beloved character, Totoro.
The lighting on the street in question was apparently deliberately planned by the city so that it would look like “an animal with ears”, but even planners hadn’t intended it to look like studio Ghibli’s famous cat-like mascot.
Nov 26, 2013
As a kid, I remember watching reruns of Mighty Mouse on TV with my dad. It was a fun little show, but what made it really special was knowing that he enjoyed it when he was growing up, and that he was sharing his memories and at the same time he was making new ones with me.
Likewise, it’s been a couple decades since Japanese animation gained a steady foothold internationally, and we’re starting to see overseas fans of the medium having kids of their own. But how to pass on that anime passion to your kids? You could go the direct route and administer a severe beating each and every time they ask to watch say, Disney’s forgettable 2000 CG film Dinosaur instead of something with more artistic merit, like Hayao Miyazaki’s Laputa: Castle in the Sky.
Or, like one couple, you could go with the gentler option of painting an awesome mural of Studio Ghibli characters in the nursery, letting their quality speak for itself.
Nov 8, 2013
While eating sweets is always a pleasure, at least for this writer, making them yourself can be quite a tricky matter, can’t it? But if you’re one of the people with skills in the kitchen who enjoys making desserts, you may want to check these videos out. They show you how to create sweet snacks that look so adorable, you’ll almost feel bad eating them! Read More
Sep 16, 2013
We’ve already seen what can happen when artists take the creations of Studio Ghibli and thrust them into the world of the macabre, but the following collection of fan-art posters has left us feeling quite on edge.
Reimagining all of your animated favourites with a shocking level of impact and realism, it’s fair to say that these posters are perhaps truer to their films’ roots than Ghibli would ever care to admit, but at the same time we’re quite sure that, had the films had debuted with these as their official posters there would be far fewer kids pestering their parents to go and see them.
Sep 6, 2013
Animation fans around the world were saddened this week by the announcement that legendary anime director Hayao Miyazaki has decided to retire from filmmaking.
A photo posted to Twitter seems to suggest that Miyazaki’s most beloved character, the cuddly forest spirit Totoro, has decided to follow the Studio Ghibli founder’s lead and leave animation behind as well, and in doing so has crossed over into the real world.
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