Karigurashi no Arrietty (The Borrower Arrietty) - Image Boards

Much thanks to GhibliWorld, as always, for sharing much-needed news from Japan on Studio Ghibli's newest movie, Karigurashi no Arrietty ("The Borrowers"). These photos come from Japanese television, presumably NHK. As per tradition, the network has the first scoop on Ghibli's project, including image boards and interviews with producer Toshio Suzuki.

I'm going to have to scour Youtube for a video of this broadcast. If I'm able to do so, I'll share it on the Ghibl Blog.

Now a few thoughts about these image boards. As always, the artwork is brilliant, very detailed. The patented Ghibli "look" is there, but these drawings don't seem derivative at all. It feels unique. That's a very real concern for Ghibli as it prepares for a post-Miyazaki future. The temptation, and popular demand, will be to hue to the formula, and safely copy the old Miyazaki classics - another Kiki, another Totoro, another Sen. The challenge is for the studio's next generation of artists to forge their own style.

I'm not willing to settle into formula and nostalgia just yet; I still want Studio Ghibli to surprise me. I still want to see something new. It's very clear that Hayao Miyazaki's presence is felt on this film, but I don't want him to overwhelm it. The young director, 36-year-old Yonebayashi Hiromasa, needs to discover his own voice.

I'm impressed with the art style from these image boards. I've always enjoyed how Studio Ghibli - and Heidi Marco Anne back in the '70s - adapts Western stories to Japan, joining the two cultures together. These characters are distinctly Japanese, set in a 19th Century Europe ala Heidi.

That's the name that darts out at me when I see these artworks, especially that first image board at top: Heidi. The layout of that house is nearly identical to the Grandfather's home from Heidi, down to the oven, the wooden beams, and the humble arrangements. Isao Takahata's neo-realism can still be felt today, 36 years later. I wonder how much influence Heidi has on director Hiromasa and the younger members of Ghibli's staff. Personally, I'd rather have one Heidi or Marco or Anne than a hundred Wall-E's, and I hope the naturalist tradition continues down the line.

Karigurashi no Arrietty is looking very, very good. I have very high hopes for this movie. I'll be keeping my fingers crossed until summer.


Anonymous said...

here ya go

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

Thanks! Much obliged.

beyond said...

Because NHK is national broadcasting, NHK does not broadcast a scoop information of a entertainment.
These image boards are from "Arrietty Mini Book". It was explained in the Arrietty blog.

According to Arrietty blogger Nishioka, Miyazaki offered ten and several image boards for this project. Mini Book seems contains Miyazaki's image boards and NTV broadcasted it with Yonebayashi's image boards. This mini book to be released someday.

Suzuki's radio show reports the press conference of Arrietty held on Dec 16. In this press conference, teaser trailer and Miyazaki's video message were screened. You can listen an impression of reporters who saw the teaser trailer and the sound of thunder of the sound effect version from 4:18. And the theme song of Arrietty begins from 19:10. Reporters say teaser trailer was very fascinating, and the sound of thunder and cicada were impressive. One reporter says it was like Spirited Away.

beyond said...

According to Arrietty blog, Cecile Corbel does not only the theme song but also the composition of the soundtrack.
Cecile Corbel is composing the soundtrack in a French studio. All the stuff of the soundtrack are recorded in France. These data are sent to Kouji Kasamatsu and he coordinates it while meeting with Ghibli.
Arrietty's soundtrack is made by different way from previous Ghibli film.

It was announced that Cecile Corbel appears and sings Arrietty's theme song in NTV's special program "How Ponyo was born - Live broadcast from Ghibli Museum -"

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to see it! I'm so excited to be in Japan the same time a Ghibli film is released~!!

Emily said...

THIS MOVIE WAS AWESOME. I just watched it today. I am in Okinawa, so I was able to catch it;P

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