Jolynn Ridge

Written by Jolynn Ridge

Modified & Updated: 01 Jun 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Princess Mononoke is a timeless masterpiece directed by the legendary Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki. Released in 1997, this epic animated film has captured the hearts and minds of audiences around the world with its enchanting story and breathtaking visuals.

Set in a fantastical version of ancient Japan, Princess Mononoke takes viewers on a captivating journey through the conflict between nature and humanity. With its compelling characters, compelling storyline, and thought-provoking themes, the movie has become a true gem in the realm of animated cinema.

In this article, we dive deeper into the enchanting world of Princess Mononoke and uncover 42 fascinating facts about the film. From its production process to its impact on the animation industry, these tidbits are sure to intrigue both die-hard fans and newcomers alike.

Key Takeaways:

  • “Princess Mononoke” is a cool movie about a prince caught between nature and humans. It’s full of awesome animation and teaches us about the environment and greed.
  • This movie is super popular and has amazing characters. It’s all about the clash between tradition and modern society, and it’s a big hit with people all over the world!
Table of Contents

Fact #1

Princess Mononoke is an animated film directed by Hayao Miyazaki, produced by Studio Ghibli, and released in 1997.

Fact #2

The film is set in medieval Japan and follows the story of Ashitaka, a young prince who becomes involved in a conflict between forest spirits and humans.

Fact #3

Princess Mononoke explores themes of environmentalism, human greed, and the balance between nature and civilization.

Fact #4

The film was a critical and commercial success, becoming the highest-grossing film in Japan at the time of its release.

Fact #5

Hayao Miyazaki wrote the screenplay for Princess Mononoke and spent over a year on the storyboarding process.

Fact #6

Princess Mononoke features stunning hand-drawn animation, a trademark of Studio Ghibli films.

Fact #7

The film’s original title in Japanese is “Mononoke-hime,” which translates to “Spirit/Monster Princess.”

Fact #8

Princess Mononoke was the first animated film to win the Japan Academy Prize for Best Picture.

Fact #9

The English-language version of Princess Mononoke features an all-star cast, including Gillian Anderson, Billy Crudup, and Billy Bob Thornton.

Fact #10

Princess Mononoke was one of the inspirations for James Cameron’s film Avatar.

Fact #11

The film’s soundtrack, composed by Joe Hisaishi, received critical acclaim and is considered one of the best film scores of all time.

Fact #12

Princess Mononoke tackles complex moral dilemmas and presents its characters in shades of gray rather than simple heroes and villains.

Fact #13

The animation team at Studio Ghibli visited forests in Yakushima, Japan, to study the environment and capture the realistic forest settings seen in the film.

Fact #14

Princess Mononoke was released in the United States in 1999, following the success of Studio Ghibli’s previous film, Spirited Away.

Fact #15

The film’s runtime is 134 minutes, making it one of the longer animated films produced by Studio Ghibli.

Fact #16

Princess Mononoke tackles themes of industrialization and its impact on the environment, resonating with audiences worldwide.

Fact #17

The film’s animation is known for its attention to detail, from the movement of the characters to the intricate designs of the forest spirits.

Fact #18

Princess Mononoke was the highest-grossing film in Japan until it was surpassed by Miyazaki’s Spirited Away.

Fact #19

The film’s protagonist, Ashitaka, is voiced by actor Y?ji Matsuda in the Japanese version and Billy Crudup in the English version.

Fact #20

Princess Mononoke features a variety of complex and compelling female characters, including San, the wolf princess, and Lady Eboshi, the leader of Iron Town.

Fact #21

The film explores the clash between traditional Japanese culture and the encroaching influence of modern society.

Fact #22

Princess Mononoke won several international awards, including the Best Animation Film at the Fantasporto and Blue Ribbon Awards.

Fact #23

The film’s art director, Kazuo Oga, spent two years creating the intricate background paintings that give depth and realism to the film’s world.

Fact #24

Princess Mononoke presents nature as a powerful and mystical force, embodied by the majestic forest spirits and the enigmatic character of Moro, the wolf goddess.

Fact #25

Princess Mononoke was released in several other countries, including the United Kingdom, France, and Australia, further expanding its international reach.

Fact #26

The film’s Japanese premiere was attended by a record-breaking number of celebrities and dignitaries, including members of the royal family.

Fact #27

Princess Mononoke’s success helped establish Studio Ghibli as a leading animation studio on a global scale.

Fact #28

The film’s script went through multiple revisions to ensure its complex narrative was effectively conveyed to the audience.

Fact #29

Princess Mononoke was praised for its strong environmental message and its exploration of the consequences of human actions on the natural world.

Fact #30

The film’s release sparked renewed interest in Japanese animation worldwide, leading to a surge in popularity for Studio Ghibli films.

Fact #31

Princess Mononoke received widespread critical acclaim and has a certified fresh rating of 93% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Fact #32

The film’s captivating storytelling and stunning visuals continue to resonate with audiences to this day.

Fact #33

Princess Mononoke’s success in Japan led to a surge in tourism to the areas featured in the film, such as Yakushima.

Fact #34

The film’s English-language adaptation was produced by Disney’s Miramax Films and features a translation by Neil Gaiman.

Fact #35

Princess Mononoke tackles themes of prejudice and discrimination, highlighting the destructive consequences of hatred and mistrust.

Fact #36

The film’s title character, San, is known as the Princess Mononoke or “the spirit princess” due to her deep connection with the forest spirits.

Fact #37

Princess Mononoke’s animation team consisted of over 140 artists and took over three years to complete.

Fact #38

The film’s Japanese voice cast features renowned actors such as Yuriko Ishida, Y?ko Sakamoto, and Kaoru Kobayashi.

Fact #39

Princess Mononoke portrays the conflict between humans and nature as a complex issue with no clear-cut solutions.

Fact #40

The film’s success helped introduce Western audiences to the world of Japanese animation and the distinctive style of Studio Ghibli.

Fact #41

Princess Mononoke’s memorable characters and thought-provoking themes have made it a beloved film among anime enthusiasts and mainstream audiences alike.

Fact #42

Princess Mononoke remains a testament to the artistic vision of Hayao Miyazaki and the enduring power of animation to tell compelling and meaningful stories.


Princess Mononoke is a timeless masterpiece that continues to captivate audiences with its breathtaking visuals, powerful storytelling, and compelling characters. With its deep themes of environmentalism, human nature, and the complexities of war, this film has left a lasting impact on the world of cinema. As one of Studio Ghibli’s most iconic works, Princess Mononoke serves as a testament to the artistry and imagination of director Hayao Miyazaki. Whether you’re a fan of animated films or simply appreciate great storytelling, Princess Mononoke is a must-watch that will leave you both inspired and moved.


1. Who directed Princess Mononoke?

Princess Mononoke was directed by the renowned Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki.

2. When was Princess Mononoke released?

The film was originally released in Japan in 1997 and later gained international recognition.

3. What is the significance of the title “Princess Mononoke”?

The title refers to the character San, who is known as Princess Mononoke, or “Spirit Princess” in English. She serves as a key figure in the film’s narrative.

4. Is Princess Mononoke suitable for children?

While Princess Mononoke features stunning animation, it deals with mature themes and contains violence. It is recommended for older children and adults.

5. How does Princess Mononoke showcase environmentalism?

Princess Mononoke highlights the destructive impact of industrialization on nature and advocates for the preservation of the environment.

6. Does Princess Mononoke have English dubbing?

Yes, Princess Mononoke has been dubbed in English by a talented cast, making it accessible to a broader audience.

7. Is Princess Mononoke part of the Studio Ghibli collection?

Yes, Princess Mononoke is one of the iconic films produced by Studio Ghibli, known for its exceptional animated movies.

8. What makes Princess Mononoke unique from other animated films?

The film’s complex characters, stunning hand-drawn animation, and thought-provoking themes set it apart from other animated movies. It appeals to a wide range of audiences, transcending age and cultural boundaries.

9. Did Princess Mononoke receive any awards?

Yes, Princess Mononoke was critically acclaimed and won multiple awards, including Best Animation Film at the Japan Academy Prize and Best Film at the Mainichi Film Awards.

10. Where can I watch Princess Mononoke?

Princess Mononoke is widely available on various streaming platforms and can also be purchased on DVD or Blu-ray.

If you're captivated by the enchanting world of Princess Mononoke, why not explore more fascinating topics? Dive into the captivating realm of anime and uncover a treasure trove of intriguing facts. Embark on a whimsical journey to fantasy conventions and discover the magic that awaits. Or, take a step back in time and unveil the secrets behind the legendary Cleopatra film, an epic masterpiece that continues to captivate audiences. No matter which path you choose, prepare to be transported to extraordinary worlds filled with wonder and excitement.

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