Yep, that’s right – more amazing looking cupcakes courtesy of my girlfriend as a sequel to her epic Pac-Man and and Totoro ones. And damn tasty they were too. Apparently she’s got something even more special planned for her next batch. In the meantime enjoy these pics. Just putting them up here has made me so hungry.
UPDATED: Displaying a staggering sense of humour fail, Ghibli have told Youtube to pull the video. Shame. Seems some people still don’t get this whole internet marketing thing yet. Ah well.
UPDATED AGAIN: And it is back – thanks to NoDeath below in the comments, who has found the video hosted elsewhere. Good work man!
Long time readers may recall my girlfriend’s love for making things Totoro related – including my Valentines Day card and some Halloween pumpkins – and after a busy few months she finally got round to adding something new to the list. These Totoro cupcakes where made for a little friend of ours – a four year old fledgling Ghibli fanatic – who broke her arm right at the begining of the summer break. Look great don’t they? Trust me, they actually tasted even better. More pics after the jump.
With the English language release of Ponyo imminent, and his recent promotional and speaking visit to the US causing a stir, there’s no denying that there’s a buzz around Hayao Miyazaki at the moment. And it’s a buzz that’s not just getting the attention of anime fans, but also grabbing the interest of the wider mainstream media and audiences – something that is, arguably, long overdue. As such it’s either luck or great timing that Manga Entertainment have just released Panda! Go Panda! on DVD here in the UK, and while it’s been out in the US for several years, this was the first time I’d had a chance to sit down and watch this early chapter in Miyazaki-san’s career.
More sad news about a terrible loss to the anime industry – one of it’s true legends and artists Yoshinori Kanada passed away yesterday, after suffering a heart attack at the age of just 57. After making a name for himself in the 1970s working on sci-fi and giant-robo series, he eventually ended up at Studio Ghibli, working closely with Hayao Miyazaki on such monumental works as My Neighbour Totoro, Porco Rosso and Princess Mononoke among many others, and his face will be familiar to anyone that’s sat enthralled watching the extras on Ghibli DVDs. His work was so distinctive and influential that ‘the Kanada style’ became a term commonly used by Japanese animators, and if you want to see just a tiny selection from his massively impressive CV check out the report over at Anime News Network.
Some of you may remember that I picked up several special treats on my visit to the Ghibli Museum in November. Chief among them was the Blu-ray of the Kazuo Oga Exhibition: Ghibli No Eshokunin – The One Who Painted Totoro’s Forest. It was something I’d been planning to grab ever since I knew I’d be visiting the museum, but it wasn’t until this weekend that I finally managed to sit down and watch it. If you’ve ever seen any of the major Ghibli releases, then you’re already familiar with Oga-san’s work and his lovingly hand painted backgrounds that have brought films such as My Neighbour Totoro and Princess Mononoke to life. Quite frankly he is the very best in the business – quite possibly the greatest animation background artist of all time – and this disc, in it’s very elegant and typically Ghibli way, shows you exactly why.
Despite having been
boringly safely back in the UK for over a month now, I’m still only just managing to mentally process everything we saw and experienced in Tokyo. A major highlight for us, in fact one of the main reasons for going in the first place, was our trip to the Studio Ghibli Museum in the suburb of Mitaka.
Now I have to admit to a complete lack of any knowledge or experience of the Little Nemo children’s stories…apparently popular in the US, as far as I’m aware they never made any real impact on this side of the Atlantic. But I’m suddenly a little interested now, after finding out that Studio Ghibli nearly made a feature film based on the characters in the 1980s, to have been directed by the late Yoshifumi Kondo. The project never surfaced – at least not from Ghibli – but now some footage has been uncovered and dumped onto YouTube. Get ready for a little slice of classic, if low-res, Miyazaki-esque flying sequence action.