News of Hayao Miyazaki’s retirement can’t ever be trusted.

The Japanese animation master’s repeated claims that he’ll give up filmmaking are a response to the strain that creating each of his largely hand-drawn universes entails. At least that’s what Toshio Suzuki, a founder of Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki’s right-hand man for the past 40 years, believes.

"Every time he finishes a film, he’s so exhausted he can’t think about the next project,” Suzuki explains. "He’s used up his energy physically and mentally. He needs some time to clear his mind. And to have a blank canvas to come up with new ideas.”