Hayao Miyazaki's book "Starting Point: 1979 - 1996" up for (pre-)order in English!

Associate Editor, Features; Rotterdam, The Netherlands (@ardvark23)
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Hayao Miyazaki's book "Starting Point: 1979 - 1996" up for (pre-)order in English!

Apart from being one of the best directors in the world, Hayao Miyazaki is also worth listening to. That is because the man is known for not beating about the bush, and when he says something he can be uncommonly candid in describing his taste and distaste of things.

This lack of sugarcoating is thankfully also applied when he talks about himself, as is apparent in his 500 page-long book "Starting Point: 1979 - 1996".
This is a collection of columns and essays by Miyazaki in which he covers his work in animation, his founding of studio Ghibli, the state of animation worldwide and the creation of many of his masterworks.
During the period described here Hayao Miyazaki directed "Lupin III: the Catle of Cagliostro", "NausicaƤ of the Valley of Wind", "Laputa: Castle in the Sky", "My neighbour Totoro", "Kiki's Delivery Service" and "Porco Rosso", and helped produce many more.
So rest assured he had plenty to talk about!

All non-Japanese-speaking readers of this site rejoice: on the 7th of July, publisher Viz will be releasing an English translation of this bundle, and it can be pre-ordered through our affiliate.

For those interested in what can be found in this book, there are plenty of details to be read in the interview GhibliWorld.com did with Viz editor Nick Mamatas.

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The interview with editor Nick Mamatas over at GhibliWorld.com.
(Pre-)order this book through our affiliate.

Momo the CowMarch 31, 2009 12:54 AM

It was only after the New Yorker's excellent 2005 spotlight essay on Miyazaki that this man, who single-handedly resuscitated my childhood love of cinematic storytelling, was actually a pretty grim and even misanthropic character. Though I've seen more of his darker dreams and perspectives bleed into his later films (the drowned township of Ponyo on a Cliff swimming with ancient sea creatures recalled his desire, in the New Yorker interview, to see Tokyo Tower overgrown with vegetation, and Tokyo around it vengefully reclaimed by nature), his unwillingness to pass along his cynicism to his audiences made the optimistic humanity in his pictures all the brighter. It was only after reading this article that the very ordinary kindnesses to be found sprinkled throughout his pictures seemed not a reflection of the world as Miyazaki saw it, but a compensatory dream world filled with all that was lacking in his. He felt like a man whose heart had cooled not because he looked down on humanity, but because he had such high hopes and appreciated our better selves more than anyone.

Ben UmsteadMarch 31, 2009 8:59 AM

Well said, Momo, can't follow up to that other than that I look forward to reading the book. It'll be a Miyazaki summer with this and Ponyo.