‘Spirited Away: Live on Stage’ now available on HBO Max

‘Spirited Away: Live on Stage’ now available on HBO Max
via Fathom Events / YouTube
Michelle De Pacina
January 4, 2024
“Spirited Away: Live on Stage,” a theatrical adaptation of Hayao Miyazaki’s Oscar-winning animated feature film, is now streaming on HBO Max for Western audiences. 
About the adaptation: The stage production, a collaboration between Studio Ghibli and Toho‘s theater division in 2022, features two unique casts, including Mone Kamishiraishi and Kanna Hashimoto, in the lead role of Chihiro. Both performances on HBO’s streaming service are available with English-subtitled versions.
The director’s vision: Directed by Tony Award-winner John Caird (“Les Misérables”), the adaptation received acclaim for its fidelity to Miyazaki‘s vision through detailed sets and puppetry. During its initial run in Tokyo, audiences were impressed by Caird’s universal appeal of Miyazaki’s storytelling for the stage. 

“I think because they’re just really good stories,” Caird told CBR. “And so the secret of getting them right on the stage is to make sure that the imagery, the visual imagery, is faithful to Miyazaki’s vision and then everything else follows.”
Continued success: Following its successful runs in Japan, the production is reportedly scheduled for a 12-week stint at London’s Coliseum, starting April 30, with English captions provided. GKIDS has also released the stage performance on digital home release and Blu-ray, featuring both Kamishiraishi and Hashimoto in the role of Chihiro. Studio Ghibli’s animated film library, including “Spirited Away,” is also available on HBO Max.
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