UPDATED with producer statement: Hayao Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron captured the Golden Globe on Sunday for Best Motion Picture – Animated, adding to its award momentum in recent weeks.

The producers of the film did not travel to Los Angeles, so the trophy was accepted on their behalf during the ceremony. Later, producer and Studio Ghibli co-founder Toshio Suzuki posted a message on X, formerly Twitter.

“Since the beginning of the year,” he wrote in part, “Japan has been hit by a series of tragic earthquakes and accidents. When I hear the reports of many people still waiting for rescue in the disaster areas, I am filled with a sense of despair. In such a situation, I hope the bright news of winning an award can bring a smile to everyone’s face, even if only a little.”

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The win cemented The Boy and the Heron as the Oscar frontrunner in the Feature Animation category. It was also nominated at the Globes for composer Joe Hisaishi’s score, so multiple Oscar nominations seem a distinct possibility for the Gkids and Studio Ghibli release.

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The film has been a box office hit in many territories and set a record for Miyazaki in North America (as well as Gkids and Studio Ghibli) when it opened to a better-than-expected $12.8 million in December. It has grossed more than $136 million worldwide. The breakout domestic success came with nearly universal critical acclaim, setting it up as a heavyweight in awards season, particularly in an unusually soft year for some perennial animation powers. Disney’s Wish and Pixar’s Elemental both received Globe nominations, but the former was a misfire with critics and at the box office, while the latter earned some admirers but was far less of a cultural or commercial force than past Pixar titles.

Miyazaki’s fable-like films have featured a wide range of fantastical characters, but The Boy and the Heron hewed closely to his own life story. It has been billed as his most personal work to date and likely the final outing for the 83-year-old animation giant. The film follows the story of a young boy named Mahito, who has recently lost his mother. Along with a cunning and deceptive gray heron, he travels to a mysterious world outside of time where the dead and the living coexist. Suzuki has said the core of the story had to change after the death of Miyazaki’s mentor and friend, Isao Takahata. The reworking led to a focus on the strange but compelling friendship between Mahito and the heron.

Along with The Boy and the Heron, Golden Globe nominees in the category included another anime title, Suzume, along with Elemental, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, The Super Mario Bros. Movie and Wish.

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Source: DLine

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