Howl’s Moving Castle animation team reunites to celebrate new area of the Studio Ghibli theme park.

With Hayao Miyazaki’s latest anime movie, The Boy and the Heron, having largely completed its Japanese and English-region theatrical runs, we’re now in the most difficult stage of being a Ghibli fan: waiting for the studio’s next animated project. And while we’re likely at the very least several years away from the next theatrical-length Ghibli anime, assuming one ever comes, there is at least a beautiful piece of short animation from Miyazaki and two of the other most talented artists to contribute to the studio.

“Yeeee-hawwww!” shouts the energetic moving castle, looking quite a bit like the one from Howl’s Moving Castle as a shooting star streaks through the night sky above it. “Yaaaa-hooo!” it shouts, with a toothsome smile outside a mouthful of flames and expressive bugeye-like turrets.

If the overall aesthetic and impressively complex movements of the mechanized fortress look familiar to your Ghibli-attuned eyes, it’s probably because the storyboard for the sequence was created by none other than Hayao Miyazaki himself, with animation and animation direction by Akihiko Yamashita and art direction by Noboru Yoshida, with all three men reprising their roles from the production of Howl’s Moving Castle.

So what’s this new moving castle so excited about? Yet another moving castle. The golden-colored plaque on its “neck” says “Ghibli Park” in Japanese text (ジブリパーク), and this is a new TV commercial promoting the grand opening of the Nagoya-area Studio Ghibli theme park’s final area, Valley of Witches, which is coming up next month. This new area will feature recreations of locations from Kiki’s Delivery Service and Howl’s Moving Castle, including the warlock’s mecha-magical mobile home.

The video also reminds us, via a banner, that Ghibli Park is a by-reservation-only facility…

…and that new batches of tickets go on sale on the 10th of every month.

The video doesn’t mention that Ghibli Park’s recent ticket price restructuring has suddenly made visiting the park potentially much more expensive, but that’d be admittedly a lot to fit in, especially with the video also needing to take time to remind us to “Visit without hurrying,” the semi-official slogan of Ghibli Park.

Valley of Witches opens on March 16, but if you can’t wait that long to see some Ghibli witches, you can tide yourself over with this award-winning Spirited Away installation from this year’s Sapporo Snow Festival.

Source: YouTube/新CM「ジブリパーク ゆっくりきて下さい。動く城編」 via Anime News Network/Rafael Antonio Pineda, Comic Natalie
Images: YouTube/新CM「ジブリパーク ゆっくりきて下さい。動く城編」
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