The Ghibli Museum Turns 20 with a 17-Foot Totoro Balloon
by Danica Davidson
October 11, 2021
The Ghibli Museum debuted in October of 2001, making this its twentieth anniversary. So of course the museum had to party, and it did so with a celebration of about 1,300 people and a giant Totoro balloon.
More than 1,300 people wanted to be part of the event, but only so many were allowed in. You had to win a raffle to be able to take part. The Totoro balloon is about 5.3 meters (more than 17 feet) tall and 3.5 meters (about 11 ½ feet) wide. Seeing as how he’s the official mascot for the studio as well as the star of My Neighbor Totoro, it’s no surprise they chose him to symbolize this important event. Check out this video of it:
These images were also shared on Twitter:
Like many places, the museum has had some difficult times during COVID. It had to be shut down more than once due to states of emergency, and it has suffered financially as a result. The good news is that a successful crowdfunding campaign during the summer really helped out. The campaign was hoping to bring in 10 million yen (about $88,000), and it did so within the first full day. This year the museum has also been given a grant by Mitaka City. The Ghibli Museum is located in Mitaka City of Tokyo.
If you’re able to go there, the museum has exhibits, replicas and animated shorts. It also has its own themed café, where Hayao Miyazaki himself will get food and drinks. (And maybe make some sketches while he’s there.) Right now the museum is hosting a special exhibit for its most recent movie, the computer animated Earwig and the Witch.
Have you ever been to the Ghibli Museum, and if you have, what was your experience like?
Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, and its sequel, Manga Art for Intermediates, with professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.