Sharing a House with the Never-Ending Man 15 Years at Studio Ghibli
About Sharing a House with the Never-Ending Man 15 Years at Studio Ghibli
Sharing a House with the Never-Ending Man: 15 Years at Studio Ghibli was written by Steve Alpert.
This highly entertaining business memoir describes what it was like to work for Japan’s premiere animation studio, Studio Ghibli, and its reigning genius Hayao Miyazaki. Steve Alpert, a Japanese-speaking American, was the “resident foreigner” in the offices of Ghibli and its parent Tokuma Shoten and played a central role when Miyazaki’s films were starting to take off in international markets. Alpert describes hauling heavy film canisters of Princess Mononoke to Russia and California, experiencing a screaming Harvey Weinstein, dealing with Disney marketers, and then triumphantly attending glittering galas celebrating the Oscar-winning Spirited Away.
His one-of-a-kind portraits of Miyazaki and long-time producer Toshio Suzuki, and of sly, gruff, and brilliant businessman Yasuyoshi Tokuma, capture the hard work and artistry that have made Ghibli films synonymous with cinematic excellence. And as the lone gaijin in a demanding company run by some of the most famous and influential people in modern Japan, Steve Alpert tackles his own challenges of language and culture. No one else could have written this book.
Ratings & Reviews
Interesting from a point of view, questionable in some aspects.
by Frank Guhn
It's fascinating to have a book written by someone who used to work at Studio Ghibli, and in many ways this book is quite a revelation. Stories like the troubles Ghibli had with Weinstein over MONONOKE in particular are compelling. However, I do feel that some parts of this book come across as contradictory to other evidence.
Case in point: the book claims Miyazaki "vetoed" Hisaishi's rescore for "Castle in the Sky". This goes against the composer's own interview in which Miyazaki actually approved it. Considering the rescore is still available on BD, I seriously doubt the director really had that much misgivings.
In some ways a fascinating relic, but I feel this is only one piece of the puzzle. While some of the anecdotes presented here are interesting to behold, others I'd take with a grain of salt and see what others have to say. It's up to you whether you want it though.