Portait of the Artist as a Young Man #2 - Miyazaki and Takahata


Here are some photographs of a young Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, both in their early 30s, working as the "directors team" for Lupin III Series One, circa 1972.  The footage hails from the exellent Ghibli documentary DVD, Yasuo Otsuka's Joy in Motion.

Both Takahata and Miyazaki had followed Otsuka-san from Toei to A-Productions, to work on the new Lupin III television anime.  The series, which only ran for two seasons and 23 episodes, was plagued by poor ratings, and the new directors were brought in as part of a mandate from the suits on top.  The gritty violence and sex of the early episodes would give way to more humor and slapstick, but balanced with tighter scripts and more focused direction.

It's important to remember how crucial this collaboration was for the young artists.  Takahata was the elder brother, the revolutionary, the genius; but he was not a craftsman, and needed skilled animators to realize his vision.  Miyazaki became Takahata's greatest partner, not only because of his boundless skills, but his own impassioned, instinctive nature provided the perfect counterbalance to Paku-san's calculated logic.

These two always reminded me of Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock.  But that's probably just me.

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