In the good news/bad news category, this one is a real heartbreaker. Good news, according to Variety: legendary anime Studio Ghibli movies, long elusive to the streaming video watcher, will soon be available on Netflix. Bad news: That doesn’t apply if you live in the U.S., Canada, or Japan. Variety says that the combo of Netflix, sales agent Wild Bunch, and Studio Ghibli “will upload 21 Ghibli features including Academy Award-winner Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, Arrietty, Kiki’s Delivery Service, My Neighbor Totoro, and The Tale Of The Princess Kaguya” onto the streaming service.
In a prepared statement, producer Toshio Suzuki at Studio Ghibli said, “We’ve listened to our fans and have made the definitive decision to stream our film catalogue. We hope people around the world will discover the world of Studio Ghibli through this experience.” Except for people in those three other countries apparently, maybe because they are possibly already familiar with the studio?
Fear not, die-hard fans of Kiki, Arrietty, and Princess Mononoke: As previously announced, your favorite Studio Ghibli titles are still headed to HBO Max. HBO Max promises “the entire Studio Ghibli film library,” and its launch is set for May 2020. However, this is not as great as the Netflix deal, as HBO Max will cost $14.99 a month. Man, this good news/bad news whiplash is exhausting.