March 2004

March 31, 2004 "My Neighbor Totoro" Disney Cast
The featured cast for the new English dub of My Neighbor Totoro is:

Thanks to Don and Cindy Hewitt for the list.

March 29, 2004 "The Cat Returns" UK Premiere
Posted to the MML by Andrew Osmond:

Fri 2 - Sun 4 April
Patron: Juliet Stevenson

Animate the World, the Barbican's annual children's film festival returns with another family weekend of new animated feature films and shorts from around the world, together with our distinctive animation workshops and special events. The Festival opens on Friday 2 April with the British Premiere screening of The Cat Returns, the highly anticipated latest production from Studio Ghibli. We continue over the weekend with new animated films from Denmark, Japan, Zimbabwe, Luxemburg, Norway and France. As the only UK film festival dedicated solely to animation films for children, Animate the World holds a special place in revealing that there is animated life outside the confines of Hollywood. We hope that you enjoy this year's selection of children's animation from around the world.

Fri 2 April 6.00pm Tea Party and Gala Opening introduced by Juliet
THE CAT RETURNS (Neko no ongaeshi) (*) British Premiere
Following the huge international success of Spirited Away, Japan's Studio Ghibli returns with a warm, family tale about a brave schoolgirl who risks her life to save a small black cat from being run over by a truck. Soon she is surrounded by hordes of thankful cats, who take her on a thrilling adventure to the Kingdom of Cats.
Japan 2002 Dir. Hiroyuki Morita 75 min.
With thanks to Optimum Releasing

This and other festival showings can be found on the 2004 Festivals page.

March 23, 2004 Next Three R1 DVDs Confirmed for August 31st Release
Joshua Lane from Animated Bliss passed along word of a press release announcing the release of "My Neighbor Totoro", "Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind", and "Porco Rosso". A clip:

BURBANK, Calif., March 22, 2004 ľ Walt Disney Home Entertainment and Studio Ghibli proudly present three animated masterpieces from Hayao Miyazaki, the genius filmmaker of "Spirited Away," the Academy Award winner for the Best Animated Feature Film of 2002. MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO, NAUSICA─ OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND and PORCO ROSSO will each be available for the first time on a 2-disc DVD on August 31. These remarkable films each include a brand-new, stellar English language voice cast and on DVD also feature the original Japanese language track; complete storyboards; featurettes that go behind the microphone and more, presented in a pristine digital picture for the best possible viewing experience. With a unique blend of entertaining storytelling, imagination, compelling characters and stunning artistry, each of these magical and mystical worlds will enchant and delight audiences of all ages.

The entire press release can be read here.

March 19, 2004 Potential R1 Release Date for "Porco Rosso", "Nausicaa", and "Totoro"
Residents of the AnimeOnDVD forums have spotted an Auguest 31 release date for Nausicaa, Porco Rosso, and My Neighbor Totoro at FYE and Suncoast.

The release pattern follows Disney's earlier triple release of Castle in the Sky, Kiki's Delivery Service, and Spirited Away to DVD.

Details on the DVD features to come.

March 11, 2004 Happy Birthday Nausicaa!
20 years ago today Kaze no Tani no Naushika appeared in Japanese theaters. Not only is the film a landmark event in anime, it also serves as the namesake for this website. ^_^

Thanks to David Mankins for the reminder!

March 6, 2004 Steven Alpert Talks About Future US Releases
Steven Alpert (VP at Tokuma International, parent of Studio Ghibli) spoke after the screening of "Porco Rosso" in New York and revealed several new release plans. AnimeOnDVD has a complete report.

The notable bits are a) all the films will be out by the end of 2005, b) Nausicaa is next, c) some films (which were not stated) may get a theatrical release, d) Howl's Moving Castle *will* be Japanese theaters in July and in the US later e) Mononoke will get a second theatrical release in the US in subtitled form.

March 2, 2004 "Porco Rosso" At the NYCIFF
The new English dub of Porco Rosso is showing this Friday, March 5 at the 2004 New York International Children's Film Festival.

A wide release in US theaters is unlikely, so the only opportunity to catch the film on the big screen is at festivals around the world.

March 1, 2004 Nausicaa Manga English Re-issue
A cut-and-paste job, thanks Marc! ^_^

The new edition of Nausicaa from Viz just came out and I'm personally blown away. Instead of shrinking it (like they have with all their other rereleases recently), they actually increased it! It's now the same size as the Japanese manga release and essentially the same size as the single issue comic book versions they released. Plus they flipped it back to the original way (right to left) and restored all the Japanese sound effects (which are all translated in a table at the "back" of the book). The ink is more brown/black so it is closer to the original Animage version rather than the straight black they used in their earlier versions.

This will be released in seven volumes to match the Japanese manga and the original volumes Viz released in the early 90s. Short of releasing a two-volume hardback the size of the original Animage manga, this looks to be as perfect as they can make it for a US release. (Oh, it also includes the foldout with the color map of Torumekia on one side and the color poster of Nausicaa on the windmill on the other. This matches the color foldout in the Japanese version. And it still has the essay about Nausicaa that Miyazaki wrote.)

Details on the Nausicaa Around the World page Real Soon Now.

Comparisons of: