The Cat Returns

The Cat Returns
The Cat Returns
Cat Returns.jpg
Japanese onesheet
(Neko no Ongaeshi)
Genre Fantasy
Anime film
Directed by Hiroyuki Morita
Produced by Toshio Suzuki
Executive Producer
Hayao Miyazaki
Written by Reiko Yoshida
Music by Yuji Nomi
Studio Studio Ghibli
Released July 19, 2002
Runtime 75 minutes
Baron: The Cat Returns
Written by Aoi Hiiragi
Published by Tokuma
English publisher Canada USA Viz Media
Published JapanJapan
May 2002
United StatesUSA
February 2005
Anime and Manga Portal

The Cat Returns (猫の恩返し Neko no Ongaeshi?, lit. The Cat's Repayment) is a Japanese animated fantasy film directed by Hiroyuki Morita, produced by Studio Ghibli and theatrically released in Japan in 2002 and the United States in 2003.[1]

It received an Excellence Prize at the 2002 Japan Media Arts Festival.



The story is of a girl named Haru, a quiet, shy and unassuming high school student who has a suppressed ability to talk with cats. One day, she saves a darkly-colored, odd-eyed cat from being hit by a truck on a busy road. The cat is Lune, Prince of the Cat Kingdom. As thanks, the cats give Haru gifts of catnip and mice, and she is offered the Prince's hand in marriage. Her mixed reply is taken as a yes.

Wanting none of this, Haru hears a kind, female voice, which tells her to seek the Cat Bureau. Haru meets Muta, a large white cat the voice told her to seek for directions, who leads her there to meet the Baron (the same Baron from Whisper of the Heart), who is a cat figurine given life by the work of his artist, and Toto, a stone raven who comes to life much like the Baron. Soon after meeting them, Haru and Muta are forcefully taken to the Cat Kingdom, leaving Toto and the Baron in the human world to follow the group from the air. The Baron and his crow friend find the entrance to the Cat Kingdom on Earth: Five lakes forming a cat's paw.

Haru is conducted to a feast at the castle of the Cat Kingdom and she begins to slowly turn into a cat with tan paws, ears and whiskers, though still mainly human, so that she will make a suitable bride for the Prince. At the feast, the Baron (in disguise) dances with Haru as part of the entertainment, and reveals to her that the more she loses herself in the kingdom, the more cat-like she will become, and that she has to discover her true self. When the Baron is discovered and is forced to fight the guards, he and Haru are helped by Yuki, a white female cat who works as a servant in the palace and who had tried to warn Haru to leave the Cat Kingdom before she was taken to the castle. Yuki shows them an escape leading to a tunnel.

Haru, the Baron, and Muta's escape moves them through a maze to a tower, which contains a portal to Haru's world. The King goes through a series of efforts to keep them in the Cat Kingdom long enough for Haru to remain trapped in the form of a cat and have her as his daughter-in-law.

Lune and his guards return to the Cat Kingdom to reveal the King was not acting on his behalf and has no desire to marry Haru; he has instead planned on proposing to Yuki. Muta is revealed to be a notorious criminal in the Kingdom (having devoured a whole lake of fish in one session), and Yuki as being the strange voice who had advised Haru to go to the Cat Bureau. In her childhood, Haru had saved Yuki from starvation by giving her the fish cookies she was eating, and Yuki has now repaid her kindness.

Eventually, the Baron, Haru and Muta escape the Cat Realm, with the aid of Prince Lune and Toto, and Haru discovers her true self and tells the Baron how she has come to like him. He tells her "Just for the record, I admire a young woman who speaks from the heart." and that the doors of the Cat Bureau will be open for her again. Haru returns to the human world with more confidence in herself; after learning her former crush has broken up with his girlfriend, she simply replies "it doesn't matter anymore".


In 1995, Studio Ghibli released a film entitled Whisper of the Heart, based on a manga by Aoi Hiiragi, of a girl writing a fantasy novel. Although the girl's life had no magical elements, the film featured short fantasy scenes depicting what the girl was writing of. The Baron, a character of her novel, was so popular that an indirect sequel was made, featuring the Baron and another girl, a highschool student, named Haru. Muta also returned.

The Cat Returns began as the "Cat Project" in 1999. Studio Ghibli received a request from a Japanese theme park to create a 20-minute short starring cats. Hayao Miyazaki wanted three key elements to feature in the short — these were the Baron, Muta (Moon) and a mysterious antique shop. Hiiragi was commissioned to create the manga equivalent of the short, which is called Baron: The Cat Returns (バロン 猫の男爵 Baron: Neko no Danshaku?, lit. Baron: The Cat Baron) and is published in English by Viz Media. The theme park later canceled the project.

Miyazaki then took the existing work done by the "Cat Project" and used it as testing for future Ghibli directors — the short was now to be 45 minutes long. Responsibility was given to Hiroyuki Morita, who had started as an animator in 1999 for the film My Neighbors the Yamadas. Over a nine-month period he translated Hiiragi's Baron story into 525 pages of storyboards for what was to be The Cat Returns. Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki decided to produce a feature-length film based entirely on Morita's storyboard; this was partly because Haru, the main character, had a "believable feel to her".[2] It became the second theatrical (third overall) Studio Ghibli feature to be directed by someone other than Miyazaki or Takahata.


Character Japanese cast English cast
Haru Yoshioka Chizuru Ikewaki Anne Hathaway
Baron Humbert von Gikkingen Yoshihiko Hakamada Cary Elwes
Muta/Renaldo Moon Tetsu Watanabe Peter Boyle
Toto Yōsuke Saitō Elliott Gould
The Cat King Tetsurō Tanba Tim Curry
Prince Lune Takayuki Yamada Andrew Bevis
Yuki Aki Maeda Judy Greer
Natori Kenta Satoi Rene Auberjonois
Natoru Mari Hamada Andy Richter
Naoko Yoshioka Kumiko Okae Kristine Sutherland
Hiromi Hitomi Satō Kristen Bell


  • Director: Hiroyuki Morita
  • Script: Reiko Yoshida
  • Original author: Aoi Hiiragi
  • Project concept: Hayao Miyazaki
  • General producers: Toshio Suzuki, Nozomu Takahashi
  • Executive producers: Hayao Miyazaki, Takeyoshi Matsushita, Seiichiro Ujiie, Koji Hoshino, Toshio Miyagawa, Hironori Aihara, Hideyuki Takai
  • Character designer: Satoko Morikawa
  • Supervising animators: Ei Inoue, Kazutaka Ozaki
  • Art director: Naoya Tanaka
  • Digital composite & camera supervisor: Kentaro Takahashi
  • Editor: Megumi Uchida (Seyama Editing Room)
  • Music composer: Yuji Nomi
  • Music performance: Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra (conductor: Hiroshi Kumagai)
  • Theme song performance: Ayano Tsuji
  • "The Cat Returns" production committee: Tokuma Shoten, Nippon Television Network, Buena Vista Home Entertainment, Hakuhodo, Mitsubishi, Toho
  • Production: Studio Ghibli


  1. ^
  2. ^ from "The Making of The Cat Returns"

External links

Wikipe-tan face.svg Anime and manga portal

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем написать реферат

Look at other dictionaries:

  • The Cat Returns — если Вы ищете статью про «Возвращение кота в сапогах» см. Кот в сапогах (аниме) The Cat Returns Японский постер 猫の恩返し (Нэко но Онгаэси) Жанр фэнтези, приключения Анимационный фильм …   Википедия

  • The Cat Returns — Filmdaten Deutscher Titel: Das Königreich der Katzen Originaltitel: 猫の恩返し Neko no Ongaeshi Produktionsland: Japan Erscheinungsjahr: 2002 Länge: 75 Minuten Originalsprache: Japanisch …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • The Mummy Returns — Promotional poster Directed by Stephen Sommers Produced by …   Wikipedia

  • The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat — Infobox Television show name = The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat caption = genre = creator = director = Bill Perez presenter = Marvel Productions DePatie Freleng Enterprises (in name only) voices = Bob Holt Mason Adams Frank Welker Joe Eich… …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat in the Hat (film) — The Cat in the Hat Theatrical release poster Directed by Bo Welch Produced by …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat in the Hat (TV special) — The Cat in the Hat was a 1971 American animated musical television special, based on the 1957 Dr. Seuss children s book of the same name, produced by DFE Films. This special loosely follows the shell of the book s plot, but throws in some old… …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat Who Dropped a Bombshell — infobox Book | name = The Cat Who Dropped a Bombshell title orig = translator = image caption = U.S.A. edition, 2006 author = Lilian Jackson Braun cover artist = country = United States language = English series = Cat Who series genre = Mystery,… …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat and the Mermouse — Infobox Hollywood cartoon cartoon name = The Cat and the Mermouse series = Tom and Jerry caption = director = William Hanna Joseph Barbera story artist = William Hanna Joseph Barbera animator = Kenneth Muse Ed Barge Ray Patterson Irven Spence Al… …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat Above and the Mouse Below — Infobox Hollywood cartoon cartoon name = The Cat Above and the Mouse Below series = Tom and Jerry caption = The title card of The Cat Above and the Mouse Below director = Chuck Jones story artist = animator = Tom Ray Dick Thompson Ben Washam Ken… …   Wikipedia

  • The Cat That Hated People — Infobox Hollywood cartoon cartoon name = The Cat That Hated People series = caption = director = Tex Avery story artist = Heck Allen animator = Walter Clinton Louie Schmitt William Shull Grant Simmons| voice actor = Paul Frees (cat, uncredited)… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”