Reviews of “Ghiblies” (2000) and related work

“Ghiblies” (2000Moving picture, 12 minutes)

Suzuki Toshio (producer).

Mostly anecdote-type jokes about people at the studio.

A comedy loosely based on an Animage comic strip by Kondō Yoshifumi. The strip, in turn, was based on real people in the Japanese animation business at and around Ghibli, as indicated in the production diary section of The Art of Princess Mononoke (1997) for May 7, 1997:

Producer Suzuki debuts a new character “Muroi-san” following “Nonaka-kun” and “Yone-chan”. Apparently, a certain person who works at a publisher in Shimbashi and also happens to oversee Princess Mononoke is the spitting image of “Muroi-san”.

Lots of CGI experiments, a little metafiction about the character design, some live photos and film. Some of the music is from Only Yesterday (1991). 12 minutes long, very low budget. Made for a TV special about Ghibli.

References here: “It’s a Tough Era, But It May Be the Most Interesting of All: A Conversation with Tetsuya Chikushi” (2002).

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“Ghiblies: Episode 2” (2002Moving picture, 24 minutes)

Momose Yoshiyuki (director), Suzuki Toshio (producer).

A spicy karee challenge inexplicably using Ford/Marley’s No Woman No Cry, an office anecdote with erotic elements (by Ghibli standards), a full repetition and expansion of Nonaka’s love story, and a walk performed by the fish-like character who had ominously infiltrated the studio in the original, interspersed with dancing.

Vastly higher production values, less introverted, released theatrically alongside The Cat Returns (2002). About 25 minutes long. The trailer “clarifies” that the Giburi reading identifies this alternate world. Some parts look top notch, others are more like the original.

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