Ghibli Museum goes Fleischer

I don’t read Japanese, but apparently the Ghibli Museum Library is hosting a tribute screening and exhibit celebrating Max and Dave Fleischer’s Mr. Bug Goes To Town (1941). Check out the website and blog with pictures and clips. There’s even a new one-sheet poster.

Is this a one-time screening or a re-release? Can anyone translate the site to tell us what’s going on?

(Thanks, Iain Robbins)


  • Chris D.

    I cannot translate, but in Miyazaki’s book, Starting Point, he addresses Fleischer studios heavily early in the book and his opinions on them. It’s pretty fascinating because he finds Mr. Bug Goes To Town one their greatest pieces. It may have something to do with why they are hosting a museum.

  • http://www.eunqqq.com EunQ

    They are going to release it all over Japan in turn, starting from Tokyo, Chiba, and so on. One of the theater called Theater Angelica is even giving away original T-shirts on 24th and 25th.
    “Max and Dave Fleischer, Brothers who tried to surpass Disney in 1941″
    The catch phrase for film- ‘Even the small and weak one has will of its own’
    “If you are an animator, it’s a must-see.”

  • Hugo Giraud
  • http://cheekyentertainment.blogspot.com Craig Clark

    This is interesting, I’m glad this fine neglected film is getting some respect. It would have done better at the box office in it’s day if it weren’t for it’s unfortunate release date, December 9, 1941. This film needs a proper DVD release as well.

  • http://outoftheinkwell.blogspot.com Mike Dobbs

    This is great news as it’s a fine movie and one of my favorite Fleischer productions. I’ll post the information I’ve gathered on the making of the film up on my site at http://outoftheinkwell.blogspot.com as soon as I can.

  • Mike Cagle

    You go to town, Grasshopper!

  • Ange

    This is pretty cool! I’m glad that they’re doing this, I find that the history of animation is so important to our modern world. (Not sure if that comes off making sense, but I hope you understand what I mean. :>)

  • http://www.kohrtoons.com Robert Kohr

    When i was there earlier this year they had a nice little Wallace and Grummit show. Apparently they do this often. I went to another animation museum near the Ghbili museum, that one was terrible. Once again Ghbili proves itself to be animation beyond anime.

  • Robert Barker

    Good that somewhere else in the world recognize this little masterpiece of the late Fleischer Studio period. It is obvious that they were influenced by the Superman cartoons they were making. One day the film will get its due.

  • http://gagaman.blogspot.com Gagaman

    From poking around on that website I found a link to Ghibli’s whole DVD library of animated films from around the world that includes a matter of Loaf and Death, Kirikou, Belleville Rendezvous and others. Here: http://wdshe.jp/ghibli/search/list_media.jsp?genre=50&brand_ghibli=1 Fantastic news if Mr.Bug is the next in this line up. Looks like Studio Ghibli is doing for western animation Japan what what Lassenter has been doing for Ghibli in America and then some. Very cool.

    My grandmother loves this film and told me all about when it popped up on Film4 (UK channel) early one morning last year, which I taped to check it out for the first time. What a brilliant movie, so much better than Gulliver’s Travels in every way yet there seems to be zero DVD releases of it anywhere (not even public domain ones). A really under rated little flick.

  • jic

    “My grandmother loves this film and told me all about when it popped up on Film4 (UK channel) early one morning last year, which I taped to check it out for the first time. What a brilliant movie, so much better than Gulliver’s Travels in every way yet there seems to be zero DVD releases of it anywhere (not even public domain ones).”

    Amazon.co.uk currently has it in stock under the title *Hoppity Goes To Town*:

    http://preview.tinyurl.com/ybqogcg

  • Shulman

    There was certainly vast improvement from Gulliver to Hoppity at Fleischer Studio. Who knows how things might have played out had the brothers borrowed from a bank rather than Paramount?

  • http://hand-drawn-animation.blogspot.com David Nethery

    Glad to see Mr. Bug Goes to Town getting some long past due recognition. I hope Studio Ghibli’s lauding of the film eventually leads to a proper DVD /Blu-Ray restored version of the film being released.

  • http://palais.wikidot.com Jordan S.

    All of you didn’t know about the Ghibli Museum Library?! Be prepared for a lifetime of jealousy from now on… They not only distribute classic and the latest animated features and even some short and mid-length films across the country but their marketing of them goes as far as the oft-bizarre cross-promotion of having several cafés create themed dishes and drinks inspired by each of their releases. (I also remember a Japanese cafe being decorated by KUSAMA Yayoi and serving appropriately dot-composed food.)

    There’ll now be a DVD release of Mr. Bug in Japan for sure; none of the Ghibli Museum Library cinema releases thus far have not been followed by one (but only the new films – Azur et Asmar and A Matter of Loaf and Death – have had the Blu-ray Disc treatment).

    I’m also surprised that no one has yet to mention the obvious connection of releasing Mr. Bug through the Museum Library in the run-up to their similarly micro-cosmic Karigurashi no Arrietty…

  • http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=052C631F61EE2838 Iain

    To Jordan S.: You know, I actually did think that this has some sort of a link to the upcoming “The Borrower Arrietty”.

  • http://epochinkanimati0n.com Joe Pearson

    Big kudos to Miyazaki and crew for giving this brilliant and neglected classic some new life and audience.

    However, it is a more then a little ironic that “Mr. Bug’s” new lease on life is happening in Japan—the country who’s attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 is largely credited for killing the movie’s performance at the box office.

    I take this as a positive sign of progress and enlightenment in the end. Swords into ploughshares, so to speak.