Press release: After a successful series in 2017, GKIDS and Fathom Events continue their collaboration to bring a new line-up of treasured films to U.S. cinemas throughout 2018. STUDIO GHIBLI FEST 2018 gives fans an opportunity to see nine of Studio Ghibli’s revered animated masterpieces on cinema screens nationwide, along with some very special surprises for Fathom Events attendees only.
The 2018 series kicks off with the 10th anniversary of the heartwarming family adventure “Ponyo,” from Academy Award-winning Hayao Miyazaki, for three days only on March 25, 26 and 28. STUDIO GHIBLI FEST 2018 then continues with “The Cat Returns,” “Porco Rosso,” “Pom Poko,” “Princess Mononoko,” the 30th anniversary of “Grave of the Fireflies,” the 30th anniversary of “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Spirited Away,” and “Castle in the Sky.”
STUDIO GHIBLI FEST 2018 can be purchased online by visiting www.ghiblifest.com, www.FathomEvents.com, or at participating theater box offices. Moviegoers throughout the U.S. will be able to enjoy these events in over 700 select movie theaters. A complete list of theater locations will be available on the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change). Weekday showings begin at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday showings begin at 12:55 p.m. (all local times).
“After an incredible Ghibli 2017 series and the popular ‘Mary and The Witch’s Flower’ event earlier this year, we are pleased to be teaming up again with GKIDS to bring some of the world’s best animation to U.S. theatergoers,” Fathom Events CEO Ray Nutt said. “This series provides a special opportunity for fans to experience these beloved titles together on the big screen.”
“We were overjoyed with the passionate response to last year’s festival,” said GKIDS CEO Eric Beckman. “The artistry, wonder, and excitement of Studio Ghibli is best experienced in movie theaters, and we are thrilled to be working together again with Fathom Events to bring these movies to fans nationwide.”
Ponyo 10th Anniversary - Sunday, March 25; Monday, March 26 and Wednesday, March 28
When Sosuke, a young boy who lives on a clifftop overlooking the sea, rescues a stranded goldfish named Ponyo, he discovers more than he bargained for. Ponyo is a curious, energetic young creature who yearns to be human, but even as she causes chaos around the house, her father, a powerful sorcerer, schemes to return Ponyo to the sea. Miyazaki’s breathtaking, imaginative world is brought to life with an all-star cast, featuring the voices of Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Lily Tomlin, Liam Neeson and more.
The Cat Returns - Sunday, April 22; Monday, April 23 and Wednesday, April 25
Haru is walking home after a dreary day of school when she spies a cat with a small gift box in its mouth crossing a busy street, and she jumps in front of traffic to save the cat from an oncoming truck. To her amazement, the cat gets up on its hind legs, brushes itself off, and thanks her very politely. But things take an even stranger turn when later than night, the King of Cats shows up at her doorstep in a feline motorcade. He showers Haru with gifts, and decrees that she shall marry the Prince and come live in the Kingdom of Cats!
Porco Rosso - Sunday, May 20; Monday, May 21, and Wednesday, May 23
“Porco Rosso” is a world weary flying ace-turned-bounty-hunter, whose face has been transformed into that of a pig by a mysterious spell. When he infuriates a band of sky pirates with his heroics, the pirates hire Curtis, a hotshot American rival, to get rid of him. But with the help of the teenage girl Fio, an aspiring airplane designer, and sultry lounge singer named Gina, Porco takes to the skies for what may be his final high-flying showdown.
Pom Poko - Sunday, June 17; Monday, June 18 and Wednesday, June 20
From the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away, and Academy Award-nominated director Isao Takahata, comes an action-packed ecological fable about the clash between nature and human civilization. The tanuki (raccoon dogs) of Tama Hills find their fun-loving community under attack when their quiet woodlands are threatened by encroaching developers looking to create still more houses and shopping malls. Desperate to survive, the tanuki band together and learn the ancient art of transformation, shape-shifting into a comical variety of humans and spirits as they undertake a last-ditch plan to scare away the humans and save their home, in this deeply-affecting, funny and heartfelt look at what it means to live in the modern world.
Princess Mononoke - Sunday, July 22; Monday, July 23 and Wednesday, July 25
Inflicted with a deadly curse, the young warrior Ashitaka heads west in search of a cure. There, he stumbles into bitter conflict between Lady Eboshi, the proud people of Iron Town, and the enigmatic Princess Mononoke, a young girl raised by wolves, who will stop at nothing to prevent the humans from destroying her home and the forest spirits and animal gods who live there. Featuring the voices of Gillian Anderson, Billy Crudup, Claire Danes, Minnie Driver, Jada Pinkett Smith and Billy Bob Thornton.
Grave of the Fireflies 30th Anniversary - Sunday, August 12; Monday, August 13 and Wednesday, August 15
Directed by Academy Award-nominated Isao Takahata, Studio Ghibli’s Grave Of The Fireflies has been universally hailed as an artistic and emotional tour de force. As the Empire of the Sun crumbles upon itself and a rain of firebombs falls upon Japan, the final death march of a nation is echoed in millions of smaller tragedies. This is the story of Seita and his younger sister Setsuko, two children forced to fend for themselves in the aftermath of fires that swept entire cities from the face of the earth. Their struggle is a tribute to the human spirit. Presented in its digitally remastered and restored format, Grave Of The Fireflies is one of the rare films that truly deserves to be called a masterpiece.
My Neighbor Totoro 30th Anniversary - Sunday, September 30; Monday, October 1 and Wednesday, October 3
Celebrate the 30th anniversary of My Neighbor Totoro, from the legendary Studio Ghibli, creators of Spirited Away, and Academy Award-winning director Hayao Miyazaki. When Satsuki and her sister Mei move with their father to a new home in the countryside, they find country life is not as simple as it seems. They soon discover that the house and nearby woods are full of strange and delightful creatures, including a gigantic but gentle forest spirit called Totoro, who can only be seen by children. Totoro and his friends introduce the girls to a series of adventures, including a ride aboard the extraordinary Cat Bus, in this all-ages animated masterpiece featuring the voices of Tim Daly, Lea Salonga, and real-life sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning, in a classic tale of magic and adventure for the whole family.
Spirited Away - Sunday, October 28; Monday, October 29 and Wednesday, October 30
Hayao Miyazaki’s Academy Award-winning masterpiece Spirited Away was the biggest box office hit of all time in Japan and helped redefine the possibilities of animation for American audiences and a generation of new filmmakers. Chihiro thinks she is on another boring trip with her parents. But when they stop at a village that is not all that it seems, her parents undergo a mysterious transformation, and Chihiro is whisked into a world of fantastic spirits, shape-shifting dragons and a witch who never wants to see her leave. She must call on the courage she never knew she had to free herself and return her family to the outside world. Combining Japanese mythology with Alice in Wonderland-type whimsy, Spirited Away cemented Miyazaki’s reputation as an icon of animation and storytelling.
Castle in the Sky - Sunday, November 18; Monday, November 19 and Wednesday, November 20
Castle in the Sky is a timeless story of courage and friendship, with stunning animation from acclaimed Academy Award-winning director Hayao Miyazaki. This high-flying adventure begins when Pazu, an engineer’s apprentice, spies a young girl, Sheeta, floating down from the sky, held aloft by a glowing pendant. Both Sheeta and Pazu are searching for the legendary floating castle, Laputa, and they vow to travel there together to unravel the mystery of the luminous crystal. But their quest won’t be easy, as soon they are being pursued by greedy air pirates, the military, and secret government agents, who all seek the power Sheeta alone can control. The English-dubbed cast includes the vocal talents of Anna Paquin, James Van Der Beek, Cloris Leachman, Mark Hamill, Mandy Patinkin and more.