Rumours have circulated for year but today, Toshio Suzuki, General Manager at Studio Ghibli announced on Japanese TV that their animation department will be closing.
Studio Ghibli has been a pioneer in animated films with such hits as Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro. For years the studio has resisted the urge to send animation jobs overseas, resulting in their films becoming increasingly expensive to make. Their most recent film, The Tale of Princess Kaguya was considered a flop by studio standards after only making 5.1 billion yen.
The studio will now focus their effort on managing their trademarks and copyrights and generating revenue from its library of previous creations.
The last film to be released by the studio will be, ‘When Marnie Was There’. It is based on the novel by Joan G. Robinson and follows a sick girl named Anna who lives with her foster mother in the city of Sapporo in Hokkaido, Japan.
UPDATE: It looks like the studio might not be shutting down but rather reorganizing. http://kotaku.com/studio-ghibli-is-not-dead-yet-1615520289