Nippon Television Holdings, a Japanese broadcaster, has announced that Studio Ghibli will become its subsidiary in October.
According to the Japan Times, the storied animation studio, founded in 1985, will be led by Nippon TV’s senior operating officer and board director Hiroyuki Fukuda, with Ghibli president Toshio Suzuki serving as chairman and director Hayao Miyazaki serving as honorary chairman.
According to a Ghibli press release, the deal was made due to succession concerns. Miyazaki and Suzuki are now 82 and 75 years old, respectively, and Miyazaki’s oldest son and fellow director, Gorou Miyazaki, had declined to take over the studio, believing it would be too difficult for him to handle alone. The search for another candidate led to discussions with Nippon TV.
Ghibli’s association with Nippon TV has its roots tracing back to the 1980s. It all began with the broadcast of Hayao Miyazaki’s 1984 masterpiece, “Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind,” which was produced by the now-defunct Top Craft but is presently recognized as part of Ghibli’s body of work.
In 1985, this marked the commencement of Nippon TV’s regular showcasing of Ghibli’s films on its popular Friday Roadshow program block. Beyond that, Nippon TV has consistently provided financial support for Ghibli’s productions, beginning with “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” and played a crucial role in the establishment of the renowned Ghibli Museum.
Under the terms of the new agreement, Nippon TV will take ownership of a significant 42.3% of Ghibli’s shares, thus securing a majority stake in the studio.
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