6 FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT ‘SPIRITED AWAY’

“If you make Sen cry, I won’t like you anymore” – Boh

  1. Chihiro was inspired by one of Miyazaki’s friend’s daughter. The daughter was ten the time and was very apathetic. After spending time with his friend and the daughter, Miyazaki decided that he would make a film for younger girls – one that isn’t all about romance. Miyazaki said, “I felt this was not what they held dear in their hearts, not what they wanted. And so I wondered if I could make a movie in which they could be heroines.” Miyazaki wanted a movie that was made for… well… regular ten-year-olds. So he decided that Chihiro would have no special abilities and be someone that his viewers could relate to – a character that is just like a real human being

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  2. The ‘stink spirit’ scene is actually based upon one of Miyazaki’s real-life experiences. He cleaned a river once and said about it, “(It was) My local river. And there really was a bicycle. It was stuck in there. Ten of us wrapped a rope around the bars and slowly pulled it out. We really cleaned up the river, and the fish are back. And that’s why I added that scene”

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  3. The characters’ names are a reflection of how they are. For example, ‘boh’ means ‘little boy’ or ‘son,’ ‘yubaba’ means ‘bathhouse witch’ and ‘kamaji’ means ‘old boiler man’

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  4. Extra dialogue was added to the English version of the film. This is when Chihiro is narrating what she is seeing or doing – and is not in the original film. These narrations had to be added in for western audiences because for example, while it’s clear to a Japanese audience that it’s a bathhouse, this might not be so clear to a western audience

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  5. Lilo from Lilo and Stitch and Chihiro (in the English version) share the same voice actress – Daveigh Chase

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  6. Back in January 2001, the animators of Studio Ghibli had been working of the film for a year – but had only completed half of the major scenes. The movie was set to be released in 6 months time, so to meet the deadline Ghibli hired an additional 20 animators for the movie. With many of the employees working through the night to complete the movie on time…

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