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Hayao Miyazaki: Is the Studio Ghibli director working on a sequel to Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind?

As always, a lot of these rumors are the subject of wild speculation.

Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
Image credit: Studio Ghibli

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Few animators are shrouded in quite as much mystery as Hayao Miyazaki. The man who made anime history with films like Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke also seems physically incapable of walking away from the industry – even as The Boy and The Heron won him his second Oscar for his purportedly final film, he was back in the studio making yet another feature film. But what will Hayao Miyazaki’s next movie be, and why do people think he is making a sequel to 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind?

The truth is that we haven’t had any confirmation about what Miyazaki is currently working on, but that isn’t unusual for the legendary Studio Ghibli director. We didn’t even know the final title of The Boy and The Heron until its Japanese release was upon us, so we wouldn’t expect to have many details about Miyazaki’s next movie for several years at least. At least no one has bothered trying to convince us that this will be Miyazaki’s final film.

Related: After four failed attempts, its time we accept that Hayao Miyazaki will never stay retired

So where do the Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind sequel rumors come from? They mainly stem from the documentary 2399 Days with Hayao Miyazaki, which chronicled the making of The Boy and The Heron. At the end, the inevitable question of what comes next is asked, followed by a shot of Nausicaa and Teto from the classic Ghibli movie and Miyazaki saying “It’s painful to return to this world.”

That is far from a confirmation that Miyazaki is planning a sequel to Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, but it is the biggest hint we’ve had so far about what the director has planned for his next movie. It could easily be the director opinning on the difficulty of returning to work at his age or with the weight of his legacy always upon his shoulders. The shot of Nausicaa could be meant to reflect the changes in Miyazaki since that early stage of his career.

At this moment, there is no concrete evidence that Hayao Miyazaki is making a sequel to Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, though we also haven’t seen Studio Ghibli deny it. It seems that the only way we’re going to find out what Miyazaki has planned is by going to see it when it comes out.


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