It’s been 30 years since Studio Ghibli began producing the adorable characters, inspiring storylines and amazing animated scenes that we all know and love. The warmth of the animation house’s distinctive style has created worlds so captivating it’s almost as if our favourite characters might continue on their journey after the credits finish rolling to live in an alternate animated Ghibli universe alongside our own.

So what if there were a way to catch up with all our Ghibli friends to see how they’ve been getting along? Which stories would fans like to explore further, decades after they were originally created? If semi-retired director Hayao Miyazaki ever needed a reason to come back to making movies full-time, he might like to consider the following list of five Ghibli sequels Japanese moviegoers would most like to see.

The online survey, conducted by popular news site Excite Japan, received 320 responses from working adults in response to the question of which Ghibli film they’d most like to see given a feature-length sequel. Let’s take a look at the top five films that got the viewers’ votes, in ascending order.

5. Princess Mononoke (29 votes, 6.5 percent)


The main reason respondents gave in support for a sequel to the 1997 animated classic were to see how Ashitaka and San were getting along and what type of living arrangements they had set up. Others cited the movie’s sequel-friendly ending, with many curious to know if the animals were now enjoying their lives in unbridled nature and hoping that the fragile environment was still safe and flourishing.

4. Whisper of the Heart (36 votes, 8.1 percent)


The majority of respondents who chose this film were curious to know what the main characters, now adults, would be like today. Shizuku’s character was 14 when the film was first released in 1995, which would make her 34 years old today. Seeing as the film ends with—spoiler alert!—Shizuku accepting Seiji’s marriage proposal, most respondents would like to know if the wedding did actually go ahead and bring closure to what many say was a film ending that happened too soon and left a lot to the imagination.

3. Kiki’s Delivery Service (70 votes, 15.8 percent)


Kiki is another main character who we saw as a young child, back in 1989 when she was just 13 years old. Most respondents were curious to know how Kiki has honed her witchcraft over the years and whether she had a child of her own who embarked on a similar adventure, leaving home to train as a witch when she came of age.

2. My Neighbor Totoro (90 votes, 20.3 percent)


As we edge closer to the top spot, it’s no surprise that this enormously popular movie should make an appearance. Survey respondents were curious to see what Mei and Satsuki look like now, 27 years after the film’s initial release, and whether the girls are still able to see Totoro and his furry friends now that they’ve grown into adults. Others weren’t so concerned with the minor details, simply saying they never wanted the original movie to end and would be happy for any type of characters to help continue Totoro’s story.

And the number one movie that Japanese people want to see made into a sequel?

1. Castle in the Sky Laputa (95 votes, 21.4 percent)


The story of a floating castle is the perfect setting for any number of new adventures. Those who voted for this movie said that they wanted to see Sheeta and Pazu again, and wondered how they were getting on. Had they embarked on any new adventures? Are they married with children now, 29 years after they moved to Gondoa? And what about the guardian robot and the garden on Laputa? It’s evident that many fans would like to see how Studio Ghibli would handle a sequel to the story that’s won so many hearts around the world.

So what are your thoughts about the top five and which Ghibli movie sequel would you pay money to see? Let us know in the comments section below!

Source: Excite News via My Game News Flash
Top, insert images: AnimeMovie Guide