GKIDS Announces the North American Acquisition of Hayao Miyazaki’s “The Boy and the Heron”

GKIDS - The Boy and the Heron

Academy Award Winner Hayao Miyazaki’s First Feature in 10 Years

New York ( July 14, 2023 ) -

GKIDS, the acclaimed producer and distributor of award-winning animation, announced its acquisition of North American distribution rights to “The Boy and the Heron,” the highly anticipated new film from the legendary Academy Award-winning Hayao Miyazaki, co-founder of Japan’s celebrated animation house, Studio Ghibli. Released in Japan as “Kimitachi wa Do Ikiruka” (translated as “How Do You Live”), the film is an original story written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, produced by the Oscar-winning Studio Ghibli co-founder Toshio Suzuki, and features a musical score from Miyazaki’s long-time collaborator Joe Hisaishi.

The all-rights deal marks a continuation of GKIDS’ long-standing relationship with Ghibli. GKIDS will release “The Boy and the Heron” theatrically in North America later this year.

Informally referred to in English-language press by its tentative title, “How Do You Live,” the official international title is unveiled as “The Boy and the Heron”. The hand-drawn, animated feature – director Miyazaki’s first feature film in 10 years – opens exclusively in Japanese cinemas this weekend. In an unprecedented decision by Studio Ghibli, no images, trailers, synopses, advertisements, or other information about the film have been made available to the public prior to its release in theaters in Japan. In keeping with this policy, GKIDS will not release any further details or marketing materials at this time.

“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,’” said David Jesteadt, GKIDS president. “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.”

GKIDS handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films across all theatrical, home video, digital, and streaming platforms. The company has released Studio Ghibli’s most recent films in theaters nationwide, including the Academy Award-nominated “The Tale of The Princess Kaguya,” the Academy Award-nominated “When Marnie Was There,” “From Up on Poppy Hill” and more. Since 2017, GKIDS has produced the annual Studio Ghibli Fest, a monthly nationwide theatrical program of Ghibli film screenings in over 800 theaters across the country. The series continues this year with a focus on the films of Hayao Miyazaki.

About Studio Ghibli
Studio Ghibli is one of the most acclaimed and influential animation studios in the world, inspiring filmmakers and audiences alike over the last 30 years with beloved stories and breathtaking visuals. Under the brilliance of visionary animation directors Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, and producer Toshio Suzuki, the studio’s films are known for timeless classics such as “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” and “Ponyo” and have won countless international awards including an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature for “Spirited Away,” as well as five additional Oscar nominations for “Howl’s Moving Castle,” “The Wind Rises,” “The Tale of The Princess Kaguya,” “When Marnie Was There,” and “The Red Turtle.” Director and studio co-founder Hayao Miyazaki was separately given an Honorary Award at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Governors Awards in 2014, and the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures paid tribute to his artwork with a special exhibit when the Museum opened in September 2021.

Celebrating its 15th anniversary, GKIDS is the producer and distributor of artist-driven and award-winning animation from around the world. The company has scored an astounding 12 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, “The Breadwinner” in 2018, Mirai in 2019, and “Wolfwalkers” in 2021. GKIDS handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films, one of the world’s most coveted animation collections with titles Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke and others; as well as the critically acclaimed television series, “Neon Genesis Evangelion.” Also, GKIDS is the founder and host of Animation Is FIlm, the annual LA-based film festival which embraces the highest aspirations of animation as a cinematic art form, and is a vocal advocate for filmmakers who push the boundaries of the medium to its fullest range of artistic expressions. www.gkids.com