Ghibli to Distribute Foreign Toons

After giving the world a bevy of animated gems, including the works of master Hayao Miyazaki, Studio Ghibli is reportedly bringing toons from other countrires to Japan. According to Daily Variety, the Ghibli Museum will exhibit animated art films from around the world at the Cinema Angelika in Tokyo’s bustling Shibuya district, and will also release imports on DVD with the assistance of Buena Vista Home Entertainment.

First on Ghibli’s release shedule is The Awakening of Spring from Russian animator Alexander Petrov, who earned an Oscar in 1999 for his animated short The Old Man and the Sea, based on the classic novel by Ernest Hemingway. Designed to resemble oil painting on glass, The Awakening of Spring is slated to debut on March 17. The initial DVD release will be Paul Grimault’s 1980 feature, The King and Mockingbird (Le Roi et l’oiseau), which Miyazaki counts among his inspirations.

Miyazaki is rumored to be working on a feature-length adaptation of a Chinese novella titled I Lost My Little Boy, about a young boy dying from heart disease. Studio Ghibli has not made any official statement regarding its next project, but is expected to make an announcement soon.