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Hauru no Ugoku Shiro
(Howl's Moving Castle)


Studio Ghibli Diary Translation (Page 16)

Translator's notes in yellow.

4/2/04 (Fri.)

Today would normally be the regular rush check, but it was cancelled because there was a problem with the machine. It looks like we'll have to call a specialist. I've got a bad feeling about this.

The interns' real training began today. We thought that the production team would just have to set up the necessary materials and say "we're done," but then we realized that an essential Z light had not been put in. We scurried to install it.

4/3/04 (Sat.)

We did the rush check we were not able to do yesterday. 1000 cuts, and still more? The in-betweeners also hurried and started to finish up some work.

Today was the last weekend of spring vacation. Time for cherry blossoms. But that life has no connection to those heading out to collect work. It's a little irritating being a traffic jam.

4/5/04 (Mon.)

Again today two key animators we hired from outside finished up the work they had on hand and left. Gradually, desks at the studio are starting to empty out, and it's a little lonely. But even if the desks were full, no matter how late we worked, we'd be in trouble.

Production meeting first thing in the morning. The topic was the balance between the number or days remaining and the number of cuts remaining. Since key animators are leaving every day, of course the pace isn't improving. What is the production team to do?

4/6/04 (Tues.)

A sudden valley. The key animators' production rate was bad. But, since animation direction's rate was also bad, even if they had been faster they couldn't have accomplished any more. Will this dilemma continue all week?

Key animation passed the 120-cuts-remaining mark. Not far to the goal now.

4/7/04 (Weds.)

When editing begins, though it is something that happens every time, the number of drawings to be photographed in the latter half of the reel increases. Since there are no staff members specifically for this task, the production team takes care of it, but the older Kamimura is a problem. The younger staff can do the work quickly, but Kamimura, who has not quite got the knack of it, consults others whenever something comes up. He works about three times as slowly. Hurry up and get used to it!

4/8/04 (Thurs.)

The monthly Ghibli meeting. There is a report that we have fallen a little behind the original plan. Even though we already know it, we check progress every day against the cut-count chart.

The in-between animators, who already were walking a tightrope, now are walking on a spider's thread. While being nervous about it, we still urge the in-betweeners on. Before something snaps, won't somebody put out some more wire?

4/9/04 (Fri.)

The regular rush check. Since the production rate has been bad lately, we were not able to reach the 1000 cut mark. However, we have to be sure to be able to do it by next time.

Soon there will be fewer than 100 cuts for the key animators to finish. No matter what, they are sure to pass that mark this week.

4/10/04 (Sat.)

Finally, the key animators passed the 100-cuts-remaining mark. If you compare the remaining time to the number of cuts remaining, we are still in a tight spot, but the production team was relieved to see that they reached that plateau.

4/12/04 (Mon.)

There are now only 300 cuts remaining to be finished. But from here on... There are fewer key animators working now, and the animation directors will soon reach their peak. We worry that from here on the pace will slow. Is it possible that the pace will not slow this time?

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