How Do You Live, the newest and supposedly final film from legendary anime filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki, was released in Japan on Friday.
In an unusual move, Studio Ghibli has not made any images, trailers, synopses, commercials, or any information about the film accessible to the public prior to its Japanese theatrical release. Sources claim that the movie has earned up to $7M in the first 2 opening days in Japan.
The film is widely reported in Japan to be based on Genzaburo Yoshino’s 1937 YA novel “Kimitachi wa Do Ikiruka,” which follows a 15-year-old boy on a journey to discover spiritual growth, poverty, and the meaning of life with the assistance of his uncle, whose advice he receives from a journal.
How Do You Live is also reminiscent of the director’s own biography. Miyazaki’s father, worked for a company that made fighter jet parts, and his family was also evacuated from the city to the countryside during the war. Miyazaki also had a close relationship with his mother, who was claimed to have influenced his work and the strong female characters in his films.
Studio Ghibli has established a respectable reputation with works such as My Neighbour Totoro and the 2003 Oscar-winning Spirited Away. The studio’s timeless masterpieces and family-friendly films have also touched on social themes throughout the years.
The studio’s films have also performed well at the box office. Spirited Away grossed 31.6 billion yen ($229 million), making it Japan’s second highest-grossing anime film. Princess Mononoke comes in seventh place, making 20.1 billion yen ($146 million).
Despite the likelihood of Miyazaki returning to retirement, producer Toshio Suzuki stated that Studio Ghibli will continue to create films. “Ultimately, we are an animation studio,” he said.