Mamoru Hosoda

Mamoru Hosoda was a Japanese animated film director born on September 19, 1967 in Kamiichi, Toyama. Hosoda studied oil painting at the Kanazawa College of Art, and entered the animation industry by working on the short film "Majikaru Tarurûto-kun: Suki-suki takoyaki!" (1992). He began working for Toei Animation and worked as a key animator throughout the 1990s on projects from popular anime franchises such as "Dragon Ball Z," "Yu Yu Hakusho," and "Sailor Moon." Hosoda made his directorial debut with the short film "Digimon Adventure" (1999), an animated adaptation of the virtual pet toy and a competitor of the massive "Pokemon" franchise. This short segued into Hosoda's role as an occasional director on episodes of the "Digimon: Digital Monsters" series (Fuji TV, 1999-2000). It also led into Hosoda's first feature length film "Digimon: The Movie" (2000), co-directed with Shigeyasu Yamauchi, although the project was mostly comprised of footage from earlier shorts. Hosoda was contracted to direct Studio Ghibli's ultimately widely praised film "Howl's Moving Castle" (2004), but he was fired from the project. Foremost anime director Hayao Miyazaki ultimately helmed the project. But Hosoda then landed the director role on a film installment in anime series mainstay "One Piece," subtitled "Baron Omatsuri and the Secret Island" (2005). After making this film, Hosoda left Toei for Madhouse, another animation studio, where he began a new phase of his career. There, he directed "The Girl Who Leapt Through Time" (2006) and "Summer Wars" (2009), before leaving Madhouse in 2011 to form his own company, Studio Chizu. Hosoda's new studio, formed with Madhouse producer Yuichiro Saito, co-produced his next film, "Wolf Children" (2012). Each of these films received more acclaim than the one before, but it was "The Boy and the Beast" (2015) that elevated Hosoda's international profile as an animation auteur more than any project before. That is, until his next directorial effort, "Mirai" (2018), received nearly universal acclaim and a nomination for Best Animated Feature at the 91st Academy Awards in 2019. Hosoda was a husband and father of two children, which informed the themes of family that were often weaved into his work.