Howl’s Moving Castle, director Hayao Miyazaki’s and Studio Ghibli’s followup to their 2003 Best Animated Feature Oscar winner, Spirited Away, is now online with a new site (www.howl-movie.com). The site may be a bit difficult to navigate if you can’t read Japanese, but there’s not a whole lot there yet, only a few links and a cool image that appears to the be the Japanese movie poster.
For a good English-language site featuring news updates on Howl’s Moving Castle and other Studio Ghibli productions, go to www.onlineghibli.com. The site also contains links to a preview and an extended preview of the film, as well as a forum where fans of Miyazaki and anime in general can discuss a variety of topics. Visitors can also download a 42-second clip of the film’s theme song, The Promise of the World (Sekai no Yakusoku).
Based on a fantasy book written by Diana Wynne Jones with a script by Reiko Yoshida, the movie centers on an enchanted 18-year-old named Sophie who is trapped inside an old woman’s body and her encounter with a wizard named Hauru who inhabits a magical moving castle. Howl’s Moving Castle is scheduled to open in Japan in November before hitting France in December. Reportedly, Disney will release the film in the U.S. sometime in 2005.