If there is any major authority in beautifully told anime films for the last three and a half decades it’s been Hayao Miyazaki. His work has inspired generations of artists and writers on both sides of the world, but if some of his work was live-action, Miyazaki may not be as prevalent as he is today. So why are there rumors that a live-action version of Hayao’s Kiki’s Delivery Service is on the way?
According to an inside source for Twitch, director Shimizu Takashi was reportedly brought on to direct a live-action rendition of Miyazaki’s 1989 animated film. It seems weird that Studio Ghibli would hire Shimizu, who is better known for his directorial work on the Japanese horror series Ju-on and it’s North American remake The Grudge, but having specialized in supernatural films the man may be a shoe-in to direct. Now all this sounds fantastic – a Ghibli feature that could be handled properly by someone who knows supernatural films – but it could be too good to be true and may very well be.
Based on a 1985 novel of the same title by Eiko Kadon0, this big-budget version of Kiki’s Delivery Service would follow the story of Kiki, a 13-year-old witch gaining her independence and using her magical abilities to earn her living. The coming of age film would be one of best all-around family oriented films to see developed if Takashi has the blessing of the studio to direct, but at this moment everything we’re hearing is simply a rumor. Even Twitch, in the very first line of their story, say this “is best considered a rumor”.
So until there is solid confirmation from Studio Ghibli, Hayao Miyazaki or Shimizu Takashi that can back up this “insider” and their claims it’d be best not to get too excited. Still, if any of this is true, just think of who they could be casting.