Howl's Moving Castle

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Title howl.png
Feature Film: 20 November 2004 / 118 minutes
Screenplay, Direction: Hayao Miyazaki

Howl's Moving Castle Japanese poster
Howl's Moving Castle Japanese poster
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Based on Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. Howl's Moving Castle (ハウルの動く城 Hauru no Ugoku Shiro?) follows the story of young Sophie Hatter, a bookworm, the eldest of three daughters, a girl doomed to an uninteresting life as a hat maker. Sophie resigns herself to her fate, but fate has other plans. Cursed by the Witch of the Waste to have the body of a 90-year-old woman, Sophie finds her way to the moving castle inhabited by the wizard Howl, said by all to eat the souls of young girls.

Howl has been cursed by the Witch as well, and is seeking the love of a young girl to help him break the curse. The book had enchanted readers of all ages for nearly 20 years -- the film was released on November 20, 2004 in Toho theaters across Japan (see the FAQ for other release dates).

The screenplay was written by Hayao Miyazaki, who also produced the film. Katsuya Kondō was the Animation Director. Mamoru Hosoda had been selected to direct the film but abruptly left the project after being unable to come up with a scenario that satisfied Miyazaki. Miyazaki, facing a now tightened production schedule, then took up the director's role as well.