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Pakistan Artist Develops Ghibli-Inspired Film

Ghibli Movies

One of the most charming aspects of any Ghibli film is the exquisite hand-drawn animation, which creates a sense of intimacy and magic that computer-animated movies have a hard time replicating. And it’s this human element that’s now inspiring a group of animators in Pakistan to take out their sketchbooks to create a brand new anime that takes its styling cues from the world of Japanese animation.

Called The Glassmaker, this new film is attracting attention among anime fans around the world with its beautiful stills, heartwarming storyline and groundbreaking ambition. Usman Riaz, the artist, composer and director of the new film, first fell in love with Studio Ghibli movies at a very young age, and recently fulfilled his dreams by founding Mano Animation Studios, the very first hand-drawn animation studio in Pakistan.

Riaz and his animation studio now employ a small group of talented artists, who are working to produce The Glassmaker using the same hand-drawn animation process as Studio Ghibli. The results, which can be seen in the first five minutes of the clip above, promise to take us into a beautiful coming-of-age love story between Vincent, the son of a glassmaker, and Alliz, a young violin prodigy.

Riaz credits the many supporters who helped raise more than US$116,000 for the movie on Kickstarter in 2016, saying everything they’ve been able to do has been because of them. While the movie will take a few years to complete, Riaz says he is “fully prepared to do whatever it takes to make our dream of making hand-drawn animation a reality in Pakistan.”

To find out more about the movie, and to keep up-to-date with developments as the film progresses, be sure to check out the studio’s website and Twitter account. The release date is currently set for the end of 2020, which looks to be the start of a good decade for anime fans, with a new feature-length film from Hayao Miyazaki in store for us then too!

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