Free downloadable guide to Japanese film

January 15, 2010

Anyone interested in the wider context of anime might like to know that the Japanese cinema volume of Intellect’s Directory of World World Cinema series is available to download for free here. Editor John Berra comments: “This was never intended to be a conventional film guide, as the overall aim was always to discuss Japanese cultural life and history as expressed through the medium of film.” Sounds interesting!


Another new Studio Ghibli movie for 2010

December 16, 2009

Thanks to Marc Hairston for the information that the website for Karigurashi no Arriety, due in Summer 2010 from Studio Ghibli, has just opened. Based on Mary Norton’s book The Borrowers, the film will be directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi and supervised by Hayao Miyazaki.

Isao Takahata’s next movie, Taketori Monogatari (The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter) is based on a traditional folktale, and is also scheduled for a 2010 release although no date has been announced. Takahata’s last movie was released in 1999.

Independent Animators

December 13, 2009

Thanks to Andrew  for sending me this link to Ayaka Nakata’s Cornelis, a lovely piece.

I’ve also been having fun with the works of Jun Aoki, an Okinawan independent animator with a unique perspective on modern Japan. Not to be confused with Jun Aoki the renowned Japanese architect, but luckily the animator is highly visible on YouTube where he maintains his own channel. I’ll be bringing snippets of his work to class on Tuesday.

Origins of anime and Japanese loanwords

November 28, 2009

Two recent press clippings that might interest class members: an article about Eric P. Nash’s book Manga Kamishibai and the origins of anime here, and a humorous look at loanwords in Japanese here.

Anime and Manga Legend makes video for Queen

November 23, 2009

Leiji Matsumoto is making an anime video for Queen – the band, not the British monarch. We’ve been talking about his work on Space Battleship Yamato, aka Star Blazers, in class, so you may find this interesting.

Crisis in the Anime Industry

November 23, 2009

Look at this article about young people leaving the industry in Japan, citing hours and low pay as the problem.

Interesting stuff from Japan

November 17, 2009

Back from Washington to this interesting post from ETaiwan News about Japan’s indigenous people and their struggle for cultural survival, plus this one about Yoshitomo Nara’s success at auction in New York, and this one about anti-Japanese sentiment persisting in China’s 21st century cyberspace.

The Japan Times marked the Emperor’s 20th anniversary on the throne, and the Japan Space Agency proposed a solar power station. And for those who love cosplay, have a look at these pics of Kawasaki’s Hallowe’en parade.