Few studios are as old-school as Studio Ghibli, but fans have come to expect that from the anime giant. Over the decades, the company's founders have balked at mainstream trends to create delicate films filled with soul. Of course, that means Studio Ghibli is real protective of its IPs, so fans were stunned when news broke Studio Ghibli's catalog would be available for streaming soon. And as it turns out, the company got Hayao Miyazaki to approve the decision when some figures were flashed before him.
As reported by Sora News 24, Toshio Suzuki told press overseas how the deal came to be in a recent talk. On March 7, the studio's co-founder spoke about the move to streaming, and Suzuki said the decision was made to boost distribution of Studio Ghibli's catalog.
“Theatres and DVDs are important, but I think distribution is also important," Suzuki said.
Of course, this money-focused pitch will feel a bit strange to fans. Studio Ghibli is notorious uninterested in technology like streaming and digital animation. Miyazaki is one of the most reluctant to use such tools, but Suzuki is more open to the idea. That is why the producer spoke with Miyazaki and got the director to agree after telling him how the streaming deal can help them back more projects.
“The money it brings in can cover production costs for your movie," Suzuki told Miyazaki, and that pitch is what ultimately got the director to approve the streaming request. The producer went on to detail the exchange in more detail:
“Hayao Miyazaki is currently making a movie but it’s taking a really long time. When that happens, it’s only natural that it will require a lot of money too. I told him this can cover the production costs for that movie. When I said that, he said “Well, there’s nothing I can do then."
Clearly, Miyazaki is most interested in getting work done on his latest film, and Suzuki is around to make sure the project moves forward as expected. Now, Netflix has pitched in to bring Studio Ghibli's films to streamers abroad while HBO Max will do the same in the U.S. before long. And if Miyazaki stays on schedule, the funds from this deal will help bring his next movie to life.