November 2002

November 29, 2002 Updated: "Pom Poko" DVD English Subtitles Reappear
In the continuing battle between news sources, Jeremy Berot passed along this email from CD Japan:

We have asked Buena Vista Home Entertainment and Tokuma Japan Communications about that and both of them answered VWDZ-8020 (pompoko) does not carry English nor French subtitles.

We are sorry to tell you but we can do nothing with this matter and we have no idea why and Buena Vista inform that it contains subtitles.

If you would like to make sure, we recommend you to place an order after it's released.

We will identify the item's spec and update our website page if it contains English and French subtitles.

We are looking forward to your visit again to CDJapan.

Thank you for being a valuable customer of CDJapan.

Best Regards,
Yuri Akiyama

It seems the only sure method of determining the feature set will be to wait for the release date.

Update: Lee Johnson spotted an English subtitle option on the official Studio Ghibli DVD page.

November 27, 2002 "Spirited Away" Finland and Germany Details
Markus Kallies wrote in with the following tidbits:

I want you to know that "Spirited Away" starts in six theaters in Finland under the name "Henkien Kätkemä" in the subtitled version. It is opening in Helsinki (BioREX and Tennispalatsi), Tampere, Turku, Jyväskylä and Kuopio. Later it will also be available in Oulu (6.12.), Pori, Mikkeli, Vaasa (13.12.) and Lahti (20.12.). It is worth mentioning, that BioREX is the second largest theater in Finland with more than 600 seats.

In Germany "Spirited Away" will open on March 13th 2003. The German title is "Chihiros Reise ins Zauberland".

Finland poster

November 26, 2002 Teto Plushies Reemerge
Teto (the fox squirrel from "Nausicaa") plushies are highly sought items since production ended in Japan over fiveteen years ago. But with the release of "Laputa: Castle in the Sky" (Teto made a cameo in the film) on DVD two new plushies are being manufactured.

UFO Catcher is selling them on eBay and their online store. Other anime import shops might also stock the plushies.

Photos of the original version.

Thanks to Paul Mayer for the post on the MML.

November 26, 2002 Problems in Italy with "Kiki" DVD
Reports from Italy indicate many people who purchased the "Kiki's Delivery Service" DVD are experiencing a wide range of technical problems.

Unlike the red-tint problem with the Japanese DVD of "Sen", it appears BVHE Italia is taking steps to correct the problem. You can keep an eye on the situation by reading the BVHE Italia forum.

Thanks to many Italian Studio Ghibli fans for the news.

November 24, 2002 Film Critic Writes about Disney SA Marketing, Again
Zach Borden again brought to our attention an article by Jack Matthews, film critic for the New York Daily News. In this article, Mr. Matthews again discusses Disney's marketing of Spirited Away -- and a response from Richard Cook of Disney, illuminating Disney's plans for the movie.

November 20, 2002 "My Neighbor Totoro" R1 DVD Review
Christopher Macdonald of the Anime News Network has received a copy of the upcoming R1 DVD and plans to post his impressions to the MML and ANN later tonight.

The review is still MIA, but in the meantime read this review from AnimeJump.

November 18, 2002 Correction: "Castle in the Sky" Trailer on VHS
Sharon Westfall reported the following on the MML:

there's a new trailer for Laputa, on the Spider-man: The Return of the Green Goblin "VHS" tape, not the DVD. It's right after the normal Disney blue graphic "Coming Soon to Video and DVD".

November 17, 2002 "Spirited Away" in Belgium
Pieter Dirkx wrote in with the following:

I thought I'd let you know that the English version of Spirited Away will finally be released in Belgium on november 27th. It was previously announced that it would have been released on october 25th, but the release was later delayed...
Note : It will only play in cinema's of the 'Kinepolis' group (official website : )

November 16, 2002 "El viaje de Chihiro" in Havana
A screening of "El viaje de Chihiro" (Spirited Away) will take place during the "Festival of New Latin American Cinema". (December 3 - 13)

"El viaje de Chihiro" is participating in the "Contemporany International Panorama" screening with 27 other international films.

More information at the official site. (in Spanish)

Thanks to Ettiene Garcia for the news.

November 14, 2002 ASIFA "Annie" Awards
Winston Jackson wrote in to inform us about "Spirited Away"'s consideration for the ASIFA "Annie" (for film animation) Awards. No details as to the nominees has emerged, but the awards will be annouced on February 1, 2003.

Visit the official site for more details.

November 13, 2002 Miyazaki Films Open in Malaysia and Slovenia
Previously scheduled to open in theaters on December 5, "Princesa Mononoke" opens tomorrow (November 14) in Slovenia.

"Spirited Away" opened in Malaysia on November 7 with three dubs (Japanese, Chinese and English) showing at different theaters. Reports say the film is doing well due to the school holiday in Malaysia.

Thanks to Matevz Babuder, Tan Meng Chwen, and Eiichiro Edo fe Errol for the news.

November 13, 2002 More "Spirited Away" FYC
Chris Fielder posted the following to the MML:

In the latest issue of the Editors Guild Magazine (sent to members of IA Local 700, Motion Picture Editors Guild), there is an FYC ad for Spirited Away that asks us to consider the film for Best Film Editing, Best Sound, and Best Sound Editing. It's a lovely ad. The colors are very striking. There are similar ads in the same issue for Lilo & Stitch, Treasure Planet, and a number of other Disney films.

Click here to view the ad.

November 12, 2002 "Castle in the Sky" Trailer on an Animated "Spider-Man" DVD
Paul Mayer (quoting a thread from AnimeonDVD) posted the following to the MML:

the Laputa trailer is on this DVD, with a title card that says "coming soon":

Disney's Spider-Man: The Return of the Green Goblin
UPC 0786936199727
Released on October 29

November 11, 2002 "Spirited Away" and the European Film Awards
Jonathan Peck informed the MML that "Spirited Away" is a nominee in the "Best Non-European Film" category at the European Film Awards. Winners will be announced on December 7.

November 10, 2002 "Spirited Away" Submitted for Oscar Consideration
In the usual convoluted news pattern, this news comes from a post by Russell Watanabe to the MML which references Box Office Mojo which in turn points towards the Oscar Watch website.

The end results is that Disney has submitted three films for the "Best
Animated Feature Film" Award: "Lilo and Stitch", "Treasure Planet", and "Spirited Away".

November 5, 2002 "Laputa: Castle in the Sky" French Theaterical Release
Titled "Le Chateau dans le Ciel", the film opens in French theaters on January 15, 2003. is the official site. (Flash required)

Thanks to Atsushi Fukumoto and Frederic Levrey for the news.

November 4, 2002 Additional Australian Details for "Spirited Away"
Sylvester Ip wrote in to clarify the release details:

When it mentions nationally, it really means nationally. It will be hitting a total of 58 screens nationwide, (that's a lot, you'll be hard pressed not to find one locally. Australia's biggest cinema chain only has around 60 cinemas, just want to clarify this as it seems that there are hundreds of cinemas in the USA) art house cinemas and possibly some bigger cinemas will be showing some sessions subtitled while most will receive the dub print.. I expect the movie will run through all of the school summer holidays here in Australia, the DVD release is expected to come around April 2003, English, Japanese audio. This is based off the French R2 release so there will be no red tint and of course will be PAL since it's the Australian standard.

November 4, 2002 R2 "Pom Poko" DVD Includes English Subtitles
Paul Mayer posted the following message to the MML:

OK, BV Japan says (in Japanese) the Pompoko DVD will have Japanese, English and French subs.

The link (in Japanese).

November 2, 2002 "A Viagem de Chihiro" on the World's Largest Open Air Screen
Roger wrote in to inform everyone that "A Viagem de Chihiro" (Spirited Away) is playing at the Telefônica Open Air on November 14. The screen is 22 meters wide and 12.5 meters high.

Full information (in Portuguese) at this website.