Miyazaki whips up animated short

Kyodo News

A new short animated film featuring characters made of dough and “an egg princess” is now being shown in the city of Mitaka in western Tokyo.

“Mr. Dough and the Egg Princess,” the latest creation of animation king Hayao Miyazaki, is a 12-minute story about two characters running away from a witch named Baba Yaga, who lives in a lonesome water mill deep in a forest. The Egg Princess, the witch’s unwilling servant, is forced to do hard daily chores while a batch of kneaded dough in a trough all of a sudden comes to life from the witch’s spell.

Kiyofumi Nakajima, chief of a museum housing the director’s film studio, said the inspiration for Miyazaki’s latest work was a painting of a grain harvest by Dutch painter Pieter Bruegel. Miyazaki expanded on the image in producing the new film.

Miyazaki said in a statement that he has learned about stories about bread running away in countries where people eat bread, and that these stories are what inspired him to make the animation.

The film began showing Nov. 20 at the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, and runs through March 14 next year.