Japanese animator and director Isao Takahata has died age 82. According to reports, the award-winning director passed away in a Tokyo hospital due to lung cancer, but this is yet to be confirmed.
A spokeswoman for Studio Ghibli said, “[His death] is true, but we can’t comment further as we are trying to confirm some facts around it.”
Takahata was born in Ujiyamada, Japan, in 1935 and he’s best known for his 1988 film Grave of the Fireflies and his latest work, 2014’s The Princess of Kaguya. The anime director first began his career at the Toei studio in 1959, where he met Hayao Miyazaki. The two later co-founded the famous animation house Studio Ghibli in 1985, along with Toshio Suzuki and Yasuyoshi Tokuma.
Scroll down to read a selection of tributes below.
Really sad to hear about the passing of Isao Takahata, co-founder of Studio Ghibli. “Grave of the Fireflies” is an amazing, emotional film. And “My Neighbors the Yamadas” is incredibly charming. It also had a big influence on Michael Arndt’s script for “Little Miss Sunshine.” pic.twitter.com/0dfXC3t2sL
— Lee Unkrich (@leeunkrich) April 5, 2018
No animated movie has made me cry more than this tender, gorgeous, profound, soulful and landmark film. A giant of our art form has left us. RIP maestro Isao Takahata pic.twitter.com/YRR6eJBmp4
— Jorge R. Gutierrez (@mexopolis) April 5, 2018
R.I.P. Isao Takahata, your films will live on forever pic.twitter.com/MXsGkG4XHo
— Rotten Tomatoes (@RottenTomatoes) April 6, 2018
We’re extremely sad to hear about the passing of Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata, a pioneer of Japanese animation – he directed The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, Grave of the Fireflies, Pom Poko and many others pic.twitter.com/YDAdtvYUUj
— Barbican Centre (@BarbicanCentre) April 6, 2018
A memorial for Isao Takahata is up at my local DVD rental store pic.twitter.com/NafHWVprjF
— 🐸🐸 Frog-kun 🐸🐸 (@frog_kun) April 6, 2018
Saddened to hear Studio Ghibli co-founder and animation pioneer, Isao Takahata, has passed away at the age of 82. His films have inspired people for generations and will live forever. Rest In Peace. pic.twitter.com/kShjCHZ4sL
— nerdy (@nerdyasians) April 5, 2018