GKIDS Acquires Documentary ‘Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki’ and Sets Oscar-Qualifying Release

Read the Press Release:

NEW YORK (September 27, 2018) – GKIDS, the acclaimed producer and distributor of animation for adult and family audiences, announced it has acquired the North American distribution rights for the documentary feature NEVER-ENDING MAN: HAYAO MIYAZAKI. The film is helmed by Kaku Arakawa. GKIDS will release the film theatrically this winter.

NEVER-ENDING MAN: HAYAO MIYAZAKI follows formerly-retired film director and animator Hayao Miyazaki as he experiments for the first time with CGI. Miyazaki is a Japanese film director, producer, screenwriter, animator, author, and manga artist. In 1985 he co-founded Studio Ghibli and went on to direct highly influential and acclaimed animated films such as Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away – which won the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature in 2003. Miyazaki’s critical and commercial success continued through his final run of films including Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo, and The Wind Rises. After the 2013 release of The Wind Rises, he announced his retirement from directing, however his endlessly inventive mind has turned towards new creative avenues.

“GKIDS is excited to be able to share this intimate, unfiltered, and incredibly insightful look at Studio Ghibli co-founder Hayao Miyazaki, at home and in the studio, as he struggles to complete his latest film”, says GKIDS CEO Eric Beckman. “Spending this much face time with Miyazaki is a rare treat, for fans and non-fans alike, as we witness in real time the passions, frustrations, irritations, and childlike enthusiasm of an acknowledged legend, acutely aware that he may be creating his final work, and striving to make something vital. More than a portrait of a filmmaker, the film is a window into the life, philosophy and essence of an artist in the act of creation.”

The all-rights deal for NEVER-ENDING MAN: HAYAO MIYAZAKI was negotiated by Eric Beckman of GKIDS and Akiko Nakano of NHK Enterprises Inc.

SYNOPSIS

In 2013, film director and animator Hayao Miyazaki suddenly announced his retirement at the age of 72. But he couldn’t shake his burning desire to create. After an encounter with young CGI animators, Miyazaki embarked on a new endeavor, his first project ever to utilize CGI. But the artist, who had been adamant about hand-drawn animation, confronted many challenges. The film even faces the danger of being cancelled. Can an old master who thinks he’s past his prime shine once again? This program goes behind the scenes over two years as Miyazaki overcomes struggles to create his short film using CGI.

About GKIDS

GKIDS is a producer and distributor of award-winning feature animation for both adult and family audiences. Since 2010, the company has scored an astounding ten Best Animated Feature Oscar®-nominations with The Secret of Kells in 2010, A Cat in Paris and Chico & Rita in 2012, Ernest & Celestine in 2014, The Tale of The Princess Kaguya and Song of the Sea in 2015, Boy and the World and When Marnie Was There in 2016, My Life as a Zucchini in 2017, and The Breadwinner in 2018.  GKIDS also handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films, one of the world’s most coveted animation collections with titles Spirited AwayMy Neighbor TotoroPrincess Mononoke and others. GKIDS recently launched ANIMATION IS FILM, an annual LA-based film festival. ANIMATION IS FILM embraces the highest aspirations of animation as a cinematic art form and is a vocal advocate for filmmakers who push the boundaries of their work to the fullest range of expression that the medium is capable of.

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