3 New Works from Anime Master

Anime director Miyazaki Hayao (64) gave a sneak preview of his latest work at the weekend. The three shorts will be shown at the Studio Ghibli Museum in Mitaka from January 3. “Hoshi Katta Hi”, “Mizugumo Monmon” and “Yadosagashi” run between 12 and 16 minutes, and each is made in quite a different style. “Hoshi Katta Hi” (The Day We Bought a Star) is a fantasy about a boy and his sister who raise a star from a seed. “Mizugumo Monmon” (Water Spider Monmon) is a romance between a spider and a less than gentle female water strider. Through it, Miyazaki hopes to reduce children’s recent dislike of insects. In “Yadosagashi” (House Hunting) a young girl sets out for the mountains and encounters the spirits of nature. The anime has no music and features manga-like visual sound effects, narrated by singer-pianist Yano Akiko and veteran comedian Tamori. Visitors to the museum will only be able to see one of the animes at a time. The next Ghibli feature production, “Gedo Senki,” (Tales From the Earthsea, based on the fantasy novels by US writer Ursula Le Guin) is due for release next July, and will be directed by Miyazaki’s son Goro (38).

• Keigo (28), vocalist of the rock band Flow, was hospitalized with whiplash yesterday after a traffic accident. He was waiting at a signal in Tokyo’s Nakano Ward when he was hit from behind by a mini-van. He will have to spend the next two weeks in hospital, so Flow have had to cancel two shows scheduled for Osaka and Tokyo this month.