Spirited Away director and Studio Ghibli co-founder set to retire.

Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises, in competition at the Venice International Film Festival, will be the Oscar-winning animation director’s last film, according to Studio Ghibli.

Speaking at a press conference in Venice on Sunday, Ghibli president Koju Hoshino announced Miyazaki’s intention to retire, but declined to take questions, deferring to a news conference next week in Tokyo.

“He wants to say goodbye to all of you,” said Hoshino.

Miyazaki, 72, is not in Venice as he decided to remain in Japan for the local release of new film The Wind Rises, about the man responsible for designing Japan’s World War II fighter planes.

One of animation’s most admired and successful directors, Miyazaki won an Oscar for Spirited Away in 2003 and a Venice Golden Lion for lifetime achievement in 2005.

Across his 50-year career, national and international hits have included My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Mononoke and Howl’s Moving Castle.