Isao Takahata Honored at Locarno International Film Festival

Isao Takahata received the Honorfic Leopard at the 62nd Locarno International Film Festival in Switzerland. The festival runs from August 5-13, and Takahata is appearing as part of the festival's Manga Impact project.

A number of Takahata's films will be screened, including Horus, Prince of the Sun (it's not "Prince Valiant" ya jerks!), Grave of the Fireflies, Pom Poko, and My Neighbors the Yamadas. Takahata personally introduced Horus at this morning's screening.

Hayao Miyazaki is also being honored, with screenings of Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind, Spirited Away and Puss in Boots, but he will not be appearing in person. I'm surprised that Ponyo isn't being shown, but I'm sure they didn't want his work to overwhelm everything else.

The anime lineup at Locarno is simply spectacular, with many of the great classics. I would kill to see a film festival of similar calibur here in the United States. Hakujaden, Barefoot Gen, Belladonna of Sadness, Mind Game, Metropolis, Ghost in the Shell, The Sky Crawlers, Galaxy Express 999, Wings of Honneamise, Tekkon Kinkreet, Akira...yadda yadda yadda. There are also many Japanese animation films from before World War II, which should prove fascinating.

On Friday morning at 10:30 am, Takahata and French animation director Michael Ocelot will have a discussion at the Spazio Theatre, and the event is open to the public. How I wish I had some contacts to this event! What a fantastic follow-up to Miyazaki's appearances here in California for Ponyo. Can somebody call John Lasseter and have him fly someone out there??

I seriously need to start scoring some press passes for these events.


spaewaif said...

This is wonderful news!
I am delighted,a much-deserved prize for Takahata-sensei!!!!

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