Hayao Miyazaki is one of Japan's most popular animators. His amazing drawing skills, entertaining plots, and well-rounded characters have made timeless masterpieces out of films such as "Princess Mononoke" and "My Neighbor Totoro."
Hayao Miyazaki was born in Tokyo in 1941. His family owned a factory that built airplanes, and he fell in love with planes and flying at an early age. Anyone familiar with his films has seen the often breathtaking flying scenes that are his personal trademark.
Miyazaki's career as an animator began in 1963 when he joined Toei Animation to work on a TV series called "Wolf Boy Ken."
At Toei, he also teamed up with Isao Takahata, beginning a partnership that would last many years and lead to some of the great success stories of Japanese animated film.
In 1984, Miyazaki released a film based on his own manga series, "Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind." It was a huge success, enabling Miyazaki and Takahata to set up their own company, Studio Ghibli. They were finally free to concentrate on doing what they liked best: making high-qllality animated feature films.
Since it opened in 1985, Studio Ghibli has gone from strength to strength. "Princess Mononoke" is the second-biggest box-office hit in Japanese movie history, and "My Neighbor Totoro," as well as attracting huge audiences, was successful in another way. Sales of stuffed toys based on its odd central character helped the studio build a sound financial base.
Throughout his career, Miyazaki has traveled widely in search of inspiration. Now, he is firmly established as a figure who provides inspiration to others. He has, without a doubt, earned his place in the animators' hall of fame.