They've brought us giant trolls, talking trees and moving castles, but the doors of famed Japanese animation house Studio Ghibli may soon be set to close. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Oscar-winning studio - whose releases include Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke and My Neighbour Totoro - has seen better days. Studio co-founder Toshio Suzuki spoke to Japanese show Jounetsu Tairuku about the future of the company:
We're thinking about dissolving the production department and making major changes to the structure of Studio Ghibli. Of course, Miyazaki's retirement was quite significant.
The studio's founder and main director Hiyao Miyazaki retired in 2013. Since then, it has struggled to recover its previous success, with The Tale of Princess Kaguya failing to make back its production budget.
However, Suzuki assured the studio's legions of fans that making further films was "not impossible". Indeed, the producer is notoriously vague when it comes to deciding the company's future, having previously suggested that Miyazaki might return to filmmaking.
In any case, it's a good opportunity to look back at three of our favourite Ghibli moments.
1. Waiting for the Catbus (My Neighbour Totoro)
Who else could make stranger danger totally heartwarming?
2. Crazy Earthquake (The Wind Rises)
Stunning visuals and action - what Ghibli does (or did) best.
3. Soot Sprites
Cute soot. Soot that is cute. Oh Japan.
(Source: Hollywood Reporter)