Taste the magical world of My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away for a limited time!
Back in January, Studio Ghibli announced they would be holding a new exhibition in Tokyo to celebrate the creative talents of Ghibli producer and co-founder Toshio Suzuki.
Called “Toshio Suzuki and Studio Ghibli Exhibition”, the new limited-time event is set to feature calligraphy and words of wisdom from Suzuki, who’s authored a number of books and even had his calligraphy featured on Japanese craft beer labels.
However, there’ll be lots more to enjoy at the exhibition, as the promotional poster shows the face of Yubaba, the proprietor of the magical bathhouse in the 2001 Ghibli film Spirited Away.
As the exhibition’s April opening date draws closer, Ghibli has now decided to tease us with more details about the event, starting with a sneak peek at some of the exclusive merchandise that will only be available to purchase by visitors at the venue.
Given that the exhibition will be held at Tokyo’s Kanda Shrine, the collaborative merchandise includes specially branded ema and omomori, which are prayer plaques and amulets that can be purchased at Japanese shrines and temples. Some of the items include:
▼ An ema votive adorned with the face of Yubaba.
▼ An ema votive featuring some of the spirits from the film.
▼ And another ema, in the shape of a shikigami.
▼ There’ll also be a Yubaba omamori amulet
▼ And wooden tags that resemble the ones used to operate the bath in the movie.
▼ And as a special present, the first 1,000 people to attend the exhibition during the first six days will receive a free Yubaba mask.
In addition to the exclusive merchandise range, visitors will be able to enjoy a special limited-time menu at Edocco Cafe Masu Masu, which is located at the Edo Culture Complex on the grounds of the shrine.
Some of the limited-time meals here will include the Makkuro na Kuro Goma Ohagi no Ocha Set (“Dark Black Black Sesame Rice Ball Sweet Tea Set”), which retails for 864 yen (US$7.85), and features a round sweet that resembles the “makkuro kurosuke” (“soot sprites”) from Spirited Away.
And the Hakumai no Onigiri (“white rice rice balls”), which is a clever nod to the character of Haku in the film. Each set, priced at 864 yen, contains three rice balls moulded on the grounds of the shrine with a wish to uplift those who eat them, in the same way that Haku’s rice ball helps Chihiro gather strength in the film.
▼ One rice ball will be salt-flavoured, while the other two will contain mystery ingredients that will only be revealed to those who eat them.
And for dessert, we have the “Tonari no Kakigori” (648 yen), which pays homage to the film Tonari no Totoro (My Neighbour Totoro). Made with spring water, the shaved ice dessert will be created in the Ujikintoki style, with matcha syrup and sweet adzuki bean paste, and adorned with a leaf and acorn sweets, to recreate the magic of the forest seen in the film.
With so many unique Ghibli goods made exclusively for this new exhibition, this event looks set to be hugely popular. If you haven’t secured your pre-sale tickets yet, the good news is that tickets will be available at the door during the event, which runs from 20 April to 12 May.