Studio Ghibli films provide golden opportunities for cosplayers

Full of appealing characters and memorable stories, many of Studio Ghibli's animated films have not only delighted and entertained audiences around the world but have also provided countless opportunities for cosplayers. From classics like Laputa (as we noted in our cosplay roundup of Wonder Festival 2018 Winter) and Porco Rosso to Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away, you're sure to find familiar characters from these films at anime conventions both in Japan and abroad.

Let's not forget Hayao Miyazaki's 1989 hit film Kiki's Delivery Service. The titular heroine Kiki, the trainee witch, is a popular character to cosplay and there have been many memorable attempts to bring the whole cast of characters to life in group cosplay shoots.

Kiki's Delivery Service cosplay

However, when Twitter user and cosplayer Nakahara (@nakatehnopp) posted pictures of her Kiki's Delivery Service group cosplay, her tweet quickly went viral, with nearly 24,000 likes and 14,000 retweets at the time of writing.

Humorous and heartwarming, the cosplay shoot (photography by Soran (@soran8448)) not only featured delightful scenes between Kiki (Nakahara) and her geeky admirer Tombo (cosplayed by 87kabocha (@pumpkin6non)), but also heartwarming vignettes with Osono from Guchokipanya Bakery (cosplayed by Okuno Hosomichi (@hosomichi_cos)) and her husband Fukuo.

Source: @nakatehnopp

However, most striking was Jiji, the cat. Whereas Kiki cosplayers typically use a plush toy of some sort to represent Kiki's familiar, if they choose to include him at all, someone in Nakahara's cosplay group decided it would be fun to have a man even taller than Kiki portray him instead. Wearing a hand-crafted head piece and clad in a black spandex body suit, this Jiji cosplayer combines feline mannerisms with an unmistakable flair, creating a unique and charming portrayal that diverges from the image most fans have of Kiki and Jiji.

Kiki and Jiji

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Kiki and Tombo

Kiki and Tombo in these charming scenes look so perfect it's almost as if they stepped right out of the anime.

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Osono and Fukuo: A heartwarming collaboration

The cosplay shoot also stands out from the ordinary by focusing on Osono and her husband. As it turns out, the Kiki and Jiji as well as the Kiki and Tombo photo shoots were not originally planned. The idea came up during a "maternity photo shoot" planned by Nakahara's cosplayer friend Okuno Hosomichi (@hosomichi_cos). The cosplay shoot was so important for her that she even convinced her real-world husband to join her as she cosplayed Osono from Guchokipanya Bakery, who is visibly pregnant during the whole film.

---"Take a look at my non-cosplaying, non-Twitter-using husband, who's always saying: 'I'll never ever cosplay' or 'I don't know what to do with my face so I hate pictures' (...), gradually blossoming into a cosplayer on the day of the photo shoot (thanks to some coaxing from my friends who praised him, saying: 'You look like comedian Takeshi Nadagi lololol')."

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

It turned out to be a heartwarming collaboration. And who knows? Judging by the way he put himself into the role of Fukuo, it may not be the last time he'll join his wife in her cosplaying adventures.

Source: @nakatehnopp

Source: @nakatehnopp

If you'd like to see more of these cosplayers' activities, here are their Twitter accounts:

  • Kiki: Nakahara (@nakatehnopp)
  • Jiji: (Sorry, cat familiars never reveal their identities in public)
  • Tombo: 87kabocha (@pumpkin6non)
  • Osono: Okuno Hosomichi (@hosomichi_cos))
  • Fukuo: no Twitter account (yet)

Source: @nakatehnopp


By - Ben K.