'The Wind Rises' Trailer Bids Farewell to Animation Master Hayao Miyazaki

'Kaze Tachinu'

Director: Hayao Miyazaki
In Competition

Kaze Tachinu is an animated feature about Jiro, who dreams of flying and designing airplanes, but is unable to fly due to being nearsighted at a young age. Instead, he joins the aircraft division of a major Japanese engineering company in 1927.

The Studio Ghibli co-founder's final film rides rave festival reviews to a February limited release and potential Oscar gold.

The announcement that The Wind Rises (Kaze Tachinu) would be Hayao Miyazaki's final film was bittersweet news to fans of the famed animator.

On one hand, a legacy that included modern masterpieces like My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away was coming to an end. On the other, festival-goers lucky enough to catch The Wind Rises agreed, the film was a monumental way of saying goodbye to the medium.

An imaginative, biographic collision of poet Tatsuo Hori and World War II aviator Jiro Horikoshi, The Wind Rises debuted at the 2013 Venice Film Festival before flying stateside with appearances at the Telluride Film Festival and the New York Film Festival.

In its review, The Hollywood Reporter called it, “a film about the beauty of flight and the prelude to war, whose astonishing visuals shout that life is wonderful.”

Story: Hayao Miyazaki's Retirement Pushes 'The Wind Rises' Toward $100 Million in Japan

Miyazaki's retirement has turned the critically-praised animated film into a best animated Oscar frontrunner. The writer/director previously took home the award for 2002's Spirited Away.

The Wind Rises completed a week-long, Oscar-qualifying run in New York and Los Angeles on Nov. 14. Disney's Touchstone Pictures is planning an English-dubbed version of the film for limited release in the U.S. on February 21, with an expansion planned for the following week.