Hayao Miyazaki Confirms Studio Ghibli Stood Up to Harvey Weinstein With a Samurai Sword

This is Niche Culture. In this column, we regularly cover anime, geek culture, and things related to video games. Please leave feedback and let us know if there’s something you want us to cover!

In the wake of the “MeToo” movement and ongoing reports of sexual abuse and harassment in Hollywood, one figure was at the center of many allegations: Harvey Weinstein. We’ve learned (via The Guardian) that years ago (and now resurfaced via Metro) Studio Ghibli actually stood up to Weinstein’s tendencies – with a samurai sword.

The news was confirmed in an interview with Studio Ghibli director and co-founder Hayao Miyazaki, who confirmed the producer wanted to make huge cuts to the then-premiering Princess Mononoke. 

At the time, Weinstein was a massively influential and feared person in Hollywood, and he was in charge of the American release of the movie.

Miyazaki confirmed that they actually sent him a samurai sword in a clear message they would not back down for their vision.

“Actually, my producer [Toshio Suzuki] did that”, Miyazaki said. The legendary creator went on to note that the Hollywood producer launched an “aggressive attack” on the film’s release, and had “all these demands for cuts.” The sword was sent with a message attached: “No cuts.”

Weinstein has been known to heavily edit and cut films to match his liking, however when presented the ironclad vision that Hayao is known for, he actually gave up. When recalling the story, Miyazaki smiled and said “I defeated him.”

Studio Ghibli has been involved with games, most notably the classic Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch. Its sequel, Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom, is launching on March 23rd across Windows PC and PlayStation 4.


Owner and Publisher at Niche Gamer and Nicchiban. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry.

Where'd our comments go? Subscribe to become a member to get commenting access and true free speech!