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New book goes inside Studio Ghibli with Hayao Miyazaki

Steve Alpert worked there for 15 years and knew major players

From left: Studio Ghibli director Hayao Miyazaki, Dentsu's Ryoichi Fukuyama and then-Ghibli executive Steve Alpert in Vienna while promoting "Princess Mononoke." (Courtesy of Stone Bridge Press)

TOKYO -- Steve Alpert's book comes advertised as a business memoir, though you may find yourself grinning more often than annotating. For 15 years, starting in 1996, the American headed the international division at Studio Ghibli, Japan's most commercially and artistically successful anime company.

As their first non-Japanese hire, he negotiated with clients from Asia, Europe and the U.S., supervised the English-language translations of "Princess Mononoke" and "Spirited Away," voice-acted a character in Japanese for 2013's "The Wind Rises," and accepted awards on his employer's behalf at prestigious global film festivals.

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