For many in the film industry, being invited to join The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is significant honor and opportunity. However, for Hayao Miyazaki it doesn't appear to be one that he's interested in. The legendary director and co-founder of Studio Ghibli has reportedly turned down the invitation multiple times.
"He was actually requested three times," Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki said in 2006. "He does not seem to be glad with it because [he thinks] it seems to mean his retirement is near. Miyazaki's thought, 'I want to be as active as possible,' seems to be strong."
While that sentiment is several years old, Miyazaki still hasn't accepted an invitation from the Academy and is continuing to work. The legendary director left retirement to work on a new feature film, How Do You Live? The project is based on a famous children's story by Yoshino Genzaburo and is expected to take 3-4 years to finish.
Despite turning down the Academy's repeated invitations, Miyazaki hasn't completely turned down their honors. He accepted an honorary award in 2014 during the Oscars Governors Awards. Miyazaki's choice to decline membership invitations also hasn't dissuaded the Academy from inviting other anime creators. Just this year, Makota Shinkai got a well-deserved invite after his latest feature, Your Name, broke many box office records and knocked Spirited Away out of the long-held top spot. In This Corner of the World's Sunao Katabuchi was also asked to join along with The Boy and The Beast's Mamoru Hosoda.
In addition to this year's list of invited Japanese creators (you can check out the full list here), Suzuki himself was asked to join The Academy back in 2014, though like Miyazaki, he turned the invitation down.
What do you think about Miyazaki repeatedly turning down the Academy's invitation for membership? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
[ H/T: Next Shark ]