April 2002

April 30, 2002 "El viaje de Chihiro" Opens on August 9th
"El viaje de Chihiro" is currently scheduled for an August 9th release date in Spain.

More information (in Spanish) on Movierecord.com.

Thanks to Alvaro Suarez for posting the news to the MML.

April 23, 2002 Transcript of the SFIFF Q&A Sessions
Anime Tourist has typed up a transcription of the 4/21 session (with Toshio Suzuki, John Lasseter, and Steve Alpert) and a summary of the 4/20 session.

Thanks to Glenn Schmall for the news.

April 22, 2002 Details on US Release of "Spirited Away" and Other Films
From Chris Miller's report to the MML:

(Sunday's "Spirited Away" screening at the Castro)

Today's Q&A had both Mr Alpert and Mr Suzuki present, along with John Lasseter. I don't recall if the information came from Mr. Alpert or from Mr. Lasseter, but a tentative release date of September 20, 2002 was given for Spirited Away. We were also told that both subtitled and dubbed prints would be released.

With respect to US DVD release, I believe that the intent to release two films this year, and four next year was stated, and the primary delay to their release has been to wait for them to have been released in Japan (as we suspected, I believe). . . If dubs are available, they would be included on the R1 release, but they would not be recording any more new dubs to replace existing ones, or add to those films that do not have them.

Gregor Menasian added these details:

Revealed about US DVDs:
- 2 may be released later this year, and 3 may be released next year!
- All DVDs will include Japanese and subtitles, plus English dubs if they exist.
- "They" (I don't know if they meant Ghibli or Buena Vista Japan insist on doing the authoring in Japan (hopefully we'll get the same extras!)

April 21, 2002 Miyazaki's Future Plans
Toshio Suzuki, the producer of "Spirited Away", attended the first screening of the film at the San Francisco International Film Festival.

In a Q&A session after the film, he revealed that Miyazaki is planning to direct three more feature-length films.

One of the projects is titled "Kemushi no Boro" (Boro the Caterpillar) and has been discussed for several years. The other two projects remain a secret.

"Mei and Kittenbus" was mentioned, but as Deborah Goldsmith put it, "He said this had not been announced yet in Japan, which really surprised me; I thought the fact that Miyazaki was working on this short for the museum was well-known already."

Thanks to Scott Senkowski, Phil Suh (website plug), and Deborah Goldsmith for the news.

April 21, 2002 "Spirited Away" Wins at the Hong Kong Film Awards
The film won in the "Best Asian Film" catagory. A full list of winners and nominees is located at monkeypeaches.com

Thanks to Nathan Layman for the news.

April 19, 2002 BBC News Article on "Spirited Away"
A BBC News article on the US release of "Spirited Away" is available from this link.

Many more articles are located on the "Spirited Away" Impressions page.

Thanks to Christopher Macdonald for posting the link to the MML.

April 11, 2002 Disney Annouces "Spirited Away" Purchase
Headlined: "Disney Acquires Domestic Theatrical, Home Entertainment and TV Rights To Japan's All-Time Top Grossing Film, Miyazaki's Animated 'Spirited Away'"

Read the entire press release.

Thanks to Paul Alvarado-Dykstra for the news.

April 10, 2002 "Spirited Away" Dubbing Cast
A list of the main voices from AICN:

April 5, 2002 "Sen" DVD Details
First reported in the AnimeonDVD forums, Atsushi FUKUMOTO posted the following to the MML:


Buena Vista Home Entertainment (Japan) revealed their plan of the DVD release of SEN TO CHIHIRO NO KAMIKAKUSHI (Spirited Away), at their business convention for retailers.

The DVD is to be released in three forms: normal edition, Collector's Edition, and Ghibli DVD Player Bundled Edition.

The normal edition (VWDZ-8036) consists of two picture discs, priced 4700yen. Includes ekonte and the theatrical preview trailers.

Collector's Edition consists of three theater posters, a diorama of Yuya, a press booklet for Berlin Film Festival, and "Haku's omusubi figure". Released in limited quantity of 10000 sets, priced 15000yen.

Ghibli DVD Player Bundle Edition comes with a wood-texture DVD player, and priced 19800yen. Limited release.

The movie disc contains voice track of 1. Dolby Digital Stereo Japanese), 2. DTS ES (Japanese), 3. Dolby Digital Stereo (French), 4. Dolby Digital Stereo (Chinese). The video image is squeezed vista size (anamorphic widescreen). Subtitle has choice of Japanese, French, Chinese, English.

As the pre-ordering bonus for normal edition, "onigiri figure" which is also bundled in Collector's Edition, comes with pre-ordered normal edition. It was molded from an onigiri made by Miyazaki himself.

April 3, 2002 "Le Voyage de Chihiro" Opening in France
After a few delays, the offical release date for "Le Voyage de Chihiro" is set for April 10th in France.

Details and Information

Thanks to Touby Vang for the news.

April 2, 2002 "Spirited Away" English Dubbing Details
We have received some more information about the English dub of "Spirited Away" that Disney is handling. Don Ernst (one of the producers of "Fantasia 2000") will be the producer and Kirk Wise (co-director of "Beauty and the Beast" and "Atlantis") will direct the dubbing. Wise is a long time Miyazaki fan. The production is tentatively set to run from March through July. If this does not change (and schedule slips have happened before in Hollywood) the earliest theatrical release date in the US would be August 2002.

There is no word yet about the status of casting the voice actors.

April 1, 2002 The (hopefully) Final Word on the "Whisper" DVD
Jens Vogel sent a query to CD Japan about the removal of English subtitles, their reply:

Thank you for your e-mail.
We apologize for our misunderstanding.
VWDZ-8004 contains English subtitles, the maker informed us wrong information at first.
We have already modified our website page.

The date is an unfortunate coincident, but this news is definitely not a joke.