In March of 2007 I was doing research on Mei and the Kittenbus (めいとこねこバス, Mei to Konekobasu), an animated short “sequel” to My Neighbor Totoro by Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli. It was “released” in 2003 for regular showing at the Ghibli Museum in Japan, and has unfortunately never seen a wide release. I believe the Ghibli museum shows different animated shorts on a random basis for their tours.
While researching, I was only able to find three sites on the whole internet at that time that had any real information on it. I decided to backup their contents for mirroring, which I am finally getting around to putting up :-). This information is directly copied from those sites and I do not claim to be the original source of, or in any way own, any of the below content in this post.
Going back to this Russian Ghibli blog, I noticed he also has a lot more content on it:
http://community.livejournal.com/miyazaki_ru/tag/Mei to Konekobasu/Мэй и Котобусёнок
The Ghibli Museum
Mei and the Kittenbus
This is a short film about 20 minutes long, which was shown for a limited
time only at the Ghibli Museum. It tells the story of Mei and her friend the
kittenbus (the child of the original catbus from My Neighbor Totoro).
Mei is just small enough to ride in the kittenbus, which is only big enough
to stir up dust devils, rather than making whole fields of rice sway in its
breeze. One night they have an adventure in which they fly into the forest
with many other cat-based vehicles, including many buses and trains. There
they meet Totoro and many similar spirits, all heading for a gigantic
catliner. This liner cruises off into the sky and the kittenbus takes Mei
- Original story, screenplay and direction: Hayao Miyazaki
- Music: Joe Hisaishi
- Animation Directors: Maikiko Futaki, Sachiko Sugino, and Hiromasa Yonebayashi
- Length: 13 minutes 43 seconds
Pictures and synopsis by Chris Kuan
] (I did not worry about backing this one up.)
This is definitely one of the things on my must-do list for when I visit Japan one day ^_^.