Ha cool, je me demandais il y a peu justement ce que devenais Yonabayashi depuis la fermeture du département animation de Ghibli. Ça va être le test pour lui, il est doué ça ne fait aucun doute mais pourra-t-il se passer de l'aide de Miyazaki ainsi que des moyens que seul Ghibli était capable de lui fournir ?
J'espère que ça arrivera vite chez nous.
Achieve your mission with all your might. Despair not till your last breath.
Yonebayashi est encore un peu une énigme pour moi (bien aimé Marnie, ronflé devant Arrietty), donc je suis content de pouvoir bientôt voir un nouveau film de lui. L'inquiétude par contre, c'est évidemment que Ponoc ait vocation à faire dans le "Ghibli de substitution", on verras...
Bonne nouvelle, j'ai bien aimé ses deux premiers films. D'après mes souvenirs, il s'était déjà affranchi de Miyazaki lors de Marnie même s'il ressent toujours son influence.
De toute manière, ça me botte bien un film à la ghibli et en +, ça sort du cadre contemporain japonais slice of life, pour revenir à un monde fantaisiste comme on en retrouve dans certains World masterpiece.
J'ai du mal à considérer qu'il s'est émancipé du Vieux Barbu quand la bande annonce là ne ressemble à rien d'autre qu'à du Miyazaki. Mais ça en a aussi les qualités, le plan à 20 secondes a toutes les qualités qui faisaient que Yonebayashi était considéré par Miyazaki comme le meilleur animateur du studio.
Achieve your mission with all your might. Despair not till your last breath.
C'est vrai qu'à la vue de la bande-annonce, on y perçoit du Kiki mêlé à du chateau ambulant. Mais bon, ça reste toujours une bonne nouvelle,le style Ghibli... Le plan dont tu parles, moi aussi j'ai tilté dessus, j'avais l'impression de voir les ennemis à substances gluantes noires du chateau ambulant, sauf que ça sonne ponyo dans le rendu des poissons.
Il y a quelque chose d'intéressant à voir comment les talents de Ghibli vont se répandre dans les autres studios et les faire bénéficier de leur savoir faire. Entre Andô chez Shinkai (qui certes n'était pas exclusif à Ghibli, il a aussi bossé avec Okiura et Kon mais là Shinkai lui a vraiment demandé de faire une AD Ghibliesque), Yonebayashi dans son studio à lui. Je pense qu'on va se retrouver avec beaucoup plus de film à la Ghibli qui auront un vrai rendu Ghibli car ceux qui bossaient là bas seront dessus pour donner ce rendu là.
Et aussi voir comment Miyazaki va produire son prochain dernier film. Qui parmi les anciens salariés du Studio reviendront travailler avec lui ou pas.
Achieve your mission with all your might. Despair not till your last breath.
Il faut être inscrit pour voir l'article en entier.
Heureusement, une personne a copié-collé le texte que je vous retranscris ici :
Japan's Studio Ghibli is no more. But grieving fans of the revered animation house can take heart: the old Ghibli spirit is back with a new name. Robbie Collin says hello to Studio Ponoc
Out in the Shropshire hills about a year and a half ago, four visitors were staring up at the sky. It was a pristine August day, and the afternoon sun lit up clouds as big as mountains – “big enough,” remembers one of them, “to hide a flying city.”
The foursome visiting England were former employees of Studio Ghibli, the famed Japanese production house behind some of the best-loved animated films ever made. Spirited Away, My Neighbour Totoro and other Ghibli classics haven’t just won dedicated followings worldwide, they’ve reshaped animation itself.
Get close enough to any great new film from Disney, Pixar, Laika or Aardman, and you’ll feel Ghibli’s warming influence in every pen-stroke, pixel and puppet.
That’s why a global swell of dismay met the announcement, back in August 2014, that Ghibli would be taking a “brief pause” in feature film production – a pause that remains as yet unbroken, despite some optimistic reporting last month around a forthcoming 10-minute short called Boro the Caterpillar by the studio’s 75-year-old figurehead, Hayao Miyazaki.
In fact, shortly after work began on their 20th feature, When Marnie Was There, president Koji Hoshino gathered the staff and told them in confidence, but in no uncertain terms, that once that film was finished, Ghibli would be no more. Many were shocked, but others had sensed it coming.
Miyazaki had recently announced his retirement from directing, and the idea of Ghibli gliding on indefinitely without its legendary co-founder at the helm was unthinkable. So Marnie’s director Hiromasa Yonebayashi – known to all by his Ghibli-bestowed nickname, Maro – rallied the studio’s team of artists to make their final film.
Studio Ponoc's name comes from the Serbo-Croatian word for midnight: 'the moment when an old day ends and a new one begins' At the end, when even the promotional tour was over, Maro returned to Ghibli with the producer of Marnie, Yoshiaki Nishimura. The place was deserted: pencils and brushes lay lifelessly on desks. They walked to a nearby wine bar to drink and talk.
Maro had joined Ghibli in 1996 as an animator on Princess Mononoke, and had spent much of his time since working directly under Miyazaki, soaking up the master’s style and technique. (Maro’s first film as director, Arrietty, was adapted from Mary Norton’s Borrowers stories by Miyazaki himself.)
As they spoke about the films they still wanted to make, Maro and Nishimura realised that Ghibli was the only place they could imagine making them – and if its time was over, it was up to them to keep its spirit alight. Hence their decision, a few months later, to quietly rent an anonymous office across the road from a bakery in a Tokyo suburb, one stop on the main commuter line from Ghibli HQ, and fill it with animation desks.
Hence their equally quiet acquisition, around the same time, of the rights to The Little Broomstick, an out-of-fashion but fondly remembered children’s book by the British writer Mary Stewart. Hence their cloud-gazing trip to Shropshire with two former Ghibli artists in August 2015, and the hand-drawn animated epic they’ve been secretly crafting in that anonymous office ever since. Say hello to Studio Ponoc.
Fast-forward almost to the present, and I’m sitting across a boardroom table from Maro and Nishimura, in the studio the pair officially founded on April 15 2015. Ponoc’s aim, in Maro’s words, is to “carry forward Ghibli’s presence” into cinema’s future. Its name comes from the Serbo-Croatian word for midnight: “the moment when an old day ends and a new one begins,” as Nishimura neatly puts it.
Side by side, the two men make the kind of appealing mismatch the movie business often sparks. Tokyo-born Nishimura is all bright eyes and sharp cheekbones, and an enthusiastic talker. (We’re speaking via an interpreter, but he frequently veers off into nuanced English.) Maro, who grew up near the remote Noto peninsula, is a far more tranquil presence – his nickname refers to the loafing lifestyles of ancient noblemen – with a bashful, teddy-bear grin.
Just as today’s Disney artists see Ghibli as a guiding light, so Ponoc owes an unexpected debt to Disney. Specifically, it’s to Don Hall, one of the directors of Big Hero 6 and a writer on Moana, who planted the Ponoc seed at the 2014 Academy Awards. (Hall was there with Big Hero 6, Nishimura with Ghibli’s The Tale of The Princess Kaguya, his first film as producer.)
The first film almost everyone sees around the world, usually as a child, is an animation. That means the business has a special responsibility At a seminar two days before the ceremony, Hall spoke passionately about the future of their craft. “He’s a real Hollywood guy, and spoke from the heart,” Nishimura remembers. “And he said that the first film almost everyone sees around the world, usually as a child, is an animation. That means the business has a special responsibility, and I realised at Ghibli no-one was ready to take it on. I almost felt panic. There was nobody to do it.” One film later, he and Maro realised it was time to step up.
Outside the bright grey boardroom – Japan is the only country in the world where bright grey is an actual, existing colour – the animators are at work. They’re drawing frame after frame of Mary and the Witch’s Flower, the studio’s first feature, which almost no-one in the outside world – not even other Ghibli types – knows exists yet.
A multi-coloured line graph opposite the reception desk keeps track of the last year’s progress on the film. One line, which describes how far along they ideally should be, arcs neatly upwards, while the reality bubbles along some way below it.
There are 30 animators’ desks, about half of which are occupied at 5pm on a Monday evening, and the air tingles with the busy shiff-shiff-shiff of charcoal on copy paper. At the far end of the room is Maro’s own desk, relocated from its old place at Ghibli, with a pot of worn-down pencils on one side and a small Totoro calendar on the other.
In a separate room, beside a tidy snack bar, colourists and compositors paint the finished drawings digitally. There are neatly stacked folders of hand-drawn art everywhere.
Pinned on boards are energetic character sketches and shiningly beautiful brush-and-ink pictures of English country views: a mature rose garden, rolling blue-green fields, a winding village street. The billowing clouds Maro and Nishimura saw during their trip to Shropshire with Mary’s art director and production designer – and which play a key role in the story – are very much in evidence.
At a glance it all looks very Ghibli, and with good reason. Though Miyazaki was their best-known director, the studio’s soul arguably lay in its art department: a group of 12 long-serving artists with a poetic, painterly style that’s immediately recognisable as Ghibli.
Maro describes them as “treasures”, and after Marnie, none would have struggled to find work. But with their talents scattered to different studios, that much-loved look would have been lost for good – so Maro and Nishimura approached each of them in turn to ask if they’d be interested in moving to Ponoc.
Had they not done so, Nishimura says, “we would not have been able to make a film of Ghibli’s particular beauty again. I realised I had to keep as many people together as possible. So I said, ‘OK, we’re going to make a new film, starting from zero and pulling it together.’”
Of the 12, eight accepted – along with a handful of artists from other studios who, as Maro diplomatically races to emphasise, “are also very talented”.
With their core team assembled – plus what business types call a "quick win" in the form of a gorgeous animated advertising campaign last summer for the West Japan Railway Company – Ponoc was ready to make a film.
But what? At Ghibli, Miyazaki often drew ideas from a list of 50 favourite children’s books he’d compiled over the years, many of them European. The Borrowers and When Marnie Was There were both on there, as were Treasure Island, Winnie-the-Pooh, Swallows and Amazons and The Hobbit.
Nishimura likewise scoured children’s libraries for ideas, which he’d pitch to Maro over “lots of cheap coffee”. The more he read, the more he noticed something: “within the world of children’s books there are two patterns for stories involving magic.”
In the first, a child is born with powers and uses them to save the day. The second runs identically, except the child has to somehow obtain the powers first. So when he found a book that fit neither, he knew he was onto something.
A lot of Japanese animation has a kid solving a problem by getting inside a giant robot. The Ghibli philosophy was different, and I wanted it to be the Ponoc philosophy too That book was Mary Stewart’s The Little Broomstick, first published in 1971, and alive with the kind of pastoral enchantment that was always a Ghibli speciality. In the fine old Ghibli tradition, it began with a young girl, Mary Smith, moving somewhere remote: in this case, her Great-Aunt Charlotte’s red-brick country pile near the Shropshire village of Redmanor.
Magic comes into her life via a black cat called Tib, a strange old gardener, and a broomstick that whisks Mary to a school for witches that predates Hogwarts, the Unseen University and even Miss Cackle’s Academy.
Because of its similarities to other well-known stories – the girl-cat-broomstick combo also chimed a little too neatly with the 1989 Ghibli film Kiki’s Delivery Service – Maro was initially wary. (He also worried that certain set-pieces, including a madly surging chase scene in which hundreds of fantastical creatures escape the school, would prove too complex to animate.)
But Nishimura pressed the point. “A fundamental part of the Ghibli story is that the heroines’ humanity, rather than any special powers, was always their greatest strength,” he explains. “You may like it, you may dislike it, but a lot of Japanese animation has a kid solving a problem by getting inside a giant robot. The Ghibli philosophy was different, and I wanted it to be the Ponoc philosophy too.”
Soon enough, Maro came around. It helped that Mary fulfilled a wish-list he himself had drawn up for his first post-Ghibli film – basically, something as different as possible from the contemplative, melancholic Marnie. He had three ineffably Japanese concepts in mind: genki, meaning liveliness or high spirits, ugoki-mawari, lots of running around, and fantaji – ie, fantasy.
“I wanted to make a film that would make children’s hearts race,” he explains. “I have strong memories of watching Ghibli’s early films as a child and feeling my own heart beating faster. I have an eight-year-old, and I would like my child, and all children by extension, to have that same experience I had.”
I’d like everyone who sees the film to ask a question of themselves as they encounter darkness and doubt: what’s my next step? Using Stewart’s original story as a guide, Maro teased out the story, adding an entirely new second act that plays to Mary’s strengths as a young girl whose courage and persistence, as opposed to magic powers, sees her overcome the danger at hand.
Nishimura describes it as a film for children who are “moving into a 21st century that’s different from the one their parents imagined for them.” He goes on: “I think we all had a vision of what the world would be like, but it’s not the one we’re moving into. So what filmmakers should say at a time when people are losing hope – and what kind of film might help restore it in our children – are big themes for right now.”
"These days lots of young people if they fail at something will retreat,” continues Maro. “But Mary takes another step forward. I’d like everyone who sees the film to ask that question of themselves as they encounter darkness and doubt: what’s my next step?”
For Ponoc, the answer is clear: complete Mary by next summer, then work out what’s next. (Nishimura has plans for “four or five” more films in mind, including some eyebrow-raising collaborations, but he’s asked me to keep the details secret for the time being.)
In the meantime, the first trailer for Mary, released online today after Studio Ponoc’s first ever press conference, could hardly be more promising. Its fluidity and detail – and extraordinary beauty – are reassuringly familiar, but there’s also an unexpected spark of lunacy at work (get a load of the diving suits that splurt out flying dolphin-things).
For those of us who’ve spent the last three years on tenterhooks, the English-language trailer’s concluding tagline – “The Magic Returns” – should strike a sweet chord.
Mary and the Witch’s Flower will be released in the summer of 2017