Like Frank Sinatra or Jay-Z, any announcement of retirement from the legendary Japanese animation director Hayao Miyazaki should be taken with a pinch of salt. The Studio Ghibli co-founder, and filmmaker behind classics like “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” “Spirited Away” and “Princess Mononoke,” spent much of the 21st century talking about plans to give up directing, but after “The Wind Rises” in 2013, he seemed to be more serious about it than usual, with reports that Studio Ghibli might shutter entirely.
But, happily for everyone, it didn’t stick: Miyazaki’s been working on short film “Boro The Caterpillar,” and more recently, reports emerged from long-time producer Toshio Suzuki that Miyazaki was working on a new feature film due to be released in 2020. But a new documentary promises to give some insight into Miyazaki’s state of mind after his planned retirement and his return to filmmaking with the CGI-animated ‘Boro,’ and a trailer gives a first glimpse of it.
The footage for “Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki” was obtained by Little White Lies, who’ve also talked to the film’s director, Kaku Arakawa, who describes how “when I started filming and following Miyazaki for this documentary, he kept saying that ‘I am just a retired old man,’ but when he started working together with young CGI artists, I could see his fire started blazing again.”
The film promises a look inside the creative process of one of our very best filmmakers, and while production values don’t seem on a par with the recent, and very good, Ghibli doc “Kingdom Of Dreams And Madness,” there looks to be plenty of insight here, including, we’re promised, Miyazaki’s verdict on “Let It Go” from “Frozen.” Watch the trailer below, and you’ll be able to see the film streamed on NHK World TV on June 3rd and June 4th.