Live-Action “My Neighbor Totoro” Stage Play to Premiere Soon—Here’s When!

We’ve seen the pictures and stellar reviews of the recent live-action stage play of Studio Ghibli’s award-winning “Spirited Away.” Now, another film is being adapted for the theater—and it’s set to premiere this holiday season!

The much-beloved anime film “My Neighbor Totoro” is going to be shown onstage by UK’s Royal Shakespeare Company from October 8, 2022 to January 21, 2023, bringing to life one of Studio Ghibli’s most iconic characters.

My Neighbor Totoro Totoro statue Miyazaki Japan

Though creator Hayao Miyazaki will not have anything to do with this upcoming play, similar with the live-action adaptations of “Spirited Away” and “Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind,” the Royal Shakespeare Company will be working directly with the original composer of the animated movie, Joe Hisaishi.

Hisaishi will also serve as the play’s executive producer. It will be directed by Phelim McDermott and written by Tom Morton-Smith, with puppeteer Basil Twist in charge of practical effects.

Now, you might be wondering why “My Neighbor Totoro” is being adapted by an international theater company instead of it being shown in Japan. In a statement, Hisaishi said:

“I was involved with the original work, and so I feel strongly that I don’t want to shatter the film’s identity. If the play was being first produced and performed in Japanese, the play and film would end up overlapping each other in people’s minds. So I thought it would be best for the play to be produced overseas.

I believe My Neighbor Totoro has a universal quality, and if that is true, then even if it is produced in a different language by people who grew up in a completely different culture [from Japan], I believe it can still move people all over the world.”*

*Translated by SoraNews24

We can’t wait!

(ALSO READ: Live-Action “Spirited Away” Stage Play to Stream Online)

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