'How Do You Live' release date, trailer, and plot for the Hayao Miyazaki movie

Pass the tissues: Hayao Miyazaki is back to tug at our heartstrings.

Originally Published: 

Hayao Miyazaki loves to go into retirement — but somehow always winds up back at the drawing board (literally).

The masterful Japanese storyteller and prolific anime-style filmmaker swore he was done pumping out critically acclaimed animated features like Kiki’s Delivery Service, My Neighbor Totoro, and Princess Mononoke in 2013. That was the second retirement announcement Miyazaki has made throughout his illustrious career — the first one, announced in the 1990s, was broken with the release of Miyazaki’s most recognizable work worldwide, Spirited Away, which earned him an Oscar win for Best Animated Feature. But, as is tradition, Miyazaki un-retired again in 2016 to begin producing his next (and supposedly his last) film under the Studio Ghibli banner, How Do You Live?

Based on the bestselling 1937 novel of the same name by Yoshino Genzaburō, How Do You Live? has taken over eight years to make. Miyazaki went on the record to note that it takes him about a month to finish one minute of animation at a time, and that he was producing How Do You Live? with no deadlines to rush him or his creative team.

Finally, things have come to a wrap, and How Do You Live? has a Japanese release date — with a global release date forthcoming. Here’s what we know thus far about Miyazaki’s last-ever movie (maybe).

How Do You Live? placeholder poster from Studio Ghibli, with the novel’s re-release artwork by Shoichi Haga.

Studio Ghibli

What is the How Do You Live release date?

Though development for How Do You Live? moved at a snail’s pace and required the hands of over 60 animators to complete, the Miyazaki-directed and Toshio Suzuki-produced fantasy flick is just around the corner. How Do You Live? is slated to release in Japan on July 14, 2023. We can safely assume that an English-language dub, as well as other language dubs, will land in theaters a couple of months after.

Studio Ghibli, co-founded by Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki, released the first official poster for How Do You Live? on Dec. 13, 2022.

Studio Ghibli

What is the How Do You Live plot?

While specific plot details are being kept under wraps, we do know that Miyazaki’s How Do You Live? will be based on the title of his (favorite!) book of the same name by Yoshino Genzaburō.

How Do You Live? follows Junichi Honda, a popular 15-year-old student who is gifted in both sports and academics, but still has his fair share of teenage boy struggles in high school. His nickname is Koperu, after the astronomer Nicholas Copernicus. Koperu lives close to his uncle, and they share their emotional and ethical trials with each other in diary writings, notes, and in person. How Do You Live? alternates between the viewpoints of uncle and nephew, and is simultaneously a work of fiction, ethics, and philosophy.

We can assume that Miyazaki and Suzuki’s signature touch of supernatural elements and beings, including anthropomorphized animals and spirits, will feature prominently in the film even if the book does not veer into the fantastical.

Is there a How Do You Live trailer?

Not yet! But we should anticipate both a teaser and a trailer, likely in Japanese with English subtitles, sometime in spring 2023 and summer 2023.

Studio Ghibli movies are available to stream on HBO Max.

This article was originally published on

Related Tags