One of individuals behind the creation of the legendary animation company, Studio Ghibli has passed on. Isao Takahata, 82, died after a year long battle with a cardiac related illness. This is a sad day for not only fans of anime but for any who enjoy the work of animation and the power it can have on the audience.
When looking at the history of anime in America, two films were big influences in the 1980s and helped the media to come to be seen as being iconic. These films were Akira and Grave of the Fireflies, which Takahata directed. The film helped to show a message of the horrors of war and presented a film which even today is visually striking, emotionally powerful, and remains on the best film of all time list by several prominent film critics.
Takahata would continue to work at Studio Ghibli for years as a director, writer, and producer. His film, The Tale of Princess Kaguya was nominated for an Oscar at the 87th academy awards. Truly this is a sad day for many anime fans.
If any one message can be taken from his long catlog of titles he would created, it would be to hold onto hope and learn to smile even through the hard times. You will be missed Director Takahata.