The Boy and the Heron

Source: Studio Ghibli courtesy of GKIDS

‘The Boy and the Heron’

Studio Ghibli’s The Boy And The Heron, from director Hayao Miyazaki, has been set as the September 7 opening night gala presentation at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). 

While several Studio Ghibli films – including The Wind Rises, Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke – have previously screened at TIFF this will be the first time a Japanese film or an animated film has opened the festival. 

Hand-drawn drama The Boy And The Heron was written and directed by Studio Ghibli co-founder Miyazaki as his first feature since 2013 Oscar nominee The Wind Rises. It features a musical score from Miyazaki’s long-time collaborator Joe Hisaishi. 

The TIFF presentation will give the film (previously known in English as How Do You Live?) its international premiere after its release earlier this month in Japan. GKids is set to release the film in North American cinemas later this year. 

TIFF CEO Cameron Bailey commented: “We are honoured to open the 48th Toronto International Film Festival with the work of one of cinema’s greatest artists. Already acclaimed as a masterpiece in Japan, Hayao Miyazaki’s new film begins as a simple story of loss and love and rises to a staggering work of imagination. I look forward to our audience discovering its mysteries for themselves, but I can promise a singular, transformative experience.”