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Anime Legend Hayao Miyazaki to Retire

Hayao Miyazaki

Legendary filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki will retire after the release of his new animated project The Wind Rises, which premiered in competition over the weekend at the Venice Film Festival.

The announcement was made Sunday by Studio Ghibli President Koju Hoshino, who according to the Los Angeles Times, would only say that more information will be revealed next week at a press conference in Tokyo. “He wants to say goodbye to all of you,” Hoshino said.

Miyazaki, 72, began his animation career in 1961 at Toei Animation, and made his directorial debut in 1979 with Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro, which he also co-wrote. Following the success of  1984’s Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, he co-founded Studio Ghibli, where he produced such films as Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service and Princess Mononoke before his earlier retirement, in 1998. (By some accounts, Miyazaki has “retired” at least five times, although not all of those have been officially announced.)

The director returned to filmmaking in 2000 for Spirited Away, which won the Academy Award in 2003 for Best Animated Feature, and grossed more than Titanic in Japan. He also took the reins on Howl’s Moving Castle after director Mamoru Hosoda left the project unexpectedly.

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