GKIDS has acquired the North American distribution rights to Hayao Miyazaki’s latest animated feature The Boy and the Heron.
Produced by Studio Ghibli, The Boy and the Heron was released in Japanese theaters on Friday. No specific U.S. date has been announced yet, but GKIDS says it will put the film in theaters sometime later this year.
- The Boy and the Heron is an original story written and directed by Miyazaki, produced by Studio Ghibli co-founder Toshio Suzuki, and features a musical score from Miyazaki’s long-time collaborator Joe Hisaishi.
- The Boy and the Heron, previously referred to in English as How Do You Live, is Miyazaki’s first feature in 10 years. The film perhaps has less buzz than a new Miyazaki feature might under normal circumstances, but this time around Ghibli decided to skip any marketing, previews, or press screenings and didn’t produce a trailer for the film. In fact, the studio didn’t even release a synopsis, so the only insight that most of the world has into the story is what has been published by Japanese critics after the film’s first day in theaters.
- GKIDS and Ghibli have enjoyed a long and fruitful working relationship, and the distributor currently holds the rights to the Studio Ghibli library of films across all theatrical, home video, digital, and streaming platforms. Since 2017, GKIDS has also produced the annual Studio Ghibli Fest, a monthly nationwide theatrical program of Ghibli film screenings in over 800 theaters across the country.
- David Jesteadt, GKIDS president, said in a release: “Hayao Miyazaki is a living legend in filmmaking, as evidenced by his Academy Award win for Spirited Away and his two Oscar nominations for Howl’s Moving Castle and The Wind Rises. It’s been ten years since the world has seen a new film from Miyazaki-san, and GKIDS is so proud and honored to unveil his latest, highly anticipated masterpiece in North America.”