Their last big release (ahead of next year’s Ponyo) Tales from Earthsea may have been a disappointment.
But Studio Ghibli look set to return to fine form with an adaptation of Mary Norton’s series of books featuring The Borrowers.
The directorial debut of Hiromasa Yonebayashi, a former Ghibli animator, this new version of the whimsical story is set to be released in Japan in summer 2010, and looks like it has been given a very promising Ghibli facelift.
How so? Well, their interpretation of the tale about a thumb-sized family who live underneath the floorboards has been re-named The Borrower Arrietty after the family’s daughter.
So far so Ghibli, with the studio famous for its stories about young girls rising up against adversity by using both their fists and their wiles.
The story itself has been transplanted from 1950s England to modern day Japan, though the plot specifics are still top secret. No clue if soot sprites are involved, though considering the family live under the floorboards we imagine there'll be quite a few.
As for the studio’s famous theme tunes, Celtic harpist Cécile Corbel has lent her talents to Arrietty’s Song, and an official site (albeit in Japanese) is live here.
For now, though, we’ve got Ponyo to look forward to, released by Disney in the UK on 12 February 2010.
Ghibli fan? Post your comments below…