Hayao Miyazaki quotes on “Spirited Away” train scene of Chihiro and No-Face

I was really happy that I was able to pull off that scene. The alternative could have been something like this: No-Face becomes a monster and destroy the Bathhouse, then goes after Chihiro’s parents. Then a girl on Haku shows up and a battle ensues…That’s an easy and corny way to resolve a story, and that’s how a climax of most entertainment stories looks like.

But I was able to avoid it. I am satisfied with that.

In hindsight, I already had the train scene (maybe subconsciously) when I was still in the middle of writing the entire story. That’s probably why I created the sea after that rain. I didn’t really know what I was doing when I did it, but as I look back, I wanted a train to be on that sea. I was wondering details such as how a train could run on the water surface.

My subconscious ideas started to take shape, and eventually materialized. It was as if the pieces of the puzzle I didn’t even know I had fit together so nicely. It was exciting.

Chihiro was able to take a train at the very end of the story as a “climax.”

Most people would remember the first time they took a train on their own. If you are still a child, you would try to pretend that you are okay. You don’t want others know that you are nervous. You are too busy trying hide your anxiety, and don’t a nerve to ask questions or seek help even when you weren’t sure about something.

When that happens, the people around you in the train must look faceless, because you are too anxious and nervous to pay attention to them. You would remember there were people around you, but you wouldn’t remember what kind of people they were, right? That’s why No-Face had to be faceless. It had to be that way so that the audience could focus on Chihiro’s emotions.




Mushime and anime by Takeshi Yoro and Hayao Miyazaki