Studio Ghibli anime pop-up event brought out fans, cosplayers, vendors

Apr 18, 2024 | Culture, Life

On Sunday, April 14, Fans of Studio Ghibli came together to celebrate it and its beloved films at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre located on April 14.

Studio Ghibli is a Japanese animation studio, that is well-known in the animation industry for its many successful films, including the films Spirited Away, Kiki’s Delivery Service and Ponyo,

The pop-up event at the centre at 6 Sakura Way, in the Eglinton Avenue East and Don Valley Park area, was similar to a convention where participants got to cosplay as their favourite characters from the films.

Fans also got to enjoy many different Asian cuisines and explore vendors that were Studio Ghibli-themed.

The many cosplayers and vendors made many exciting memories at the event.

Cosplayer Bunny Tush said they enjoyed their experience at the event and made many great memories to remember it by.

“Definitely seeing all the cosplays and meeting up with, you know, some old friends, making some new friends and winning a judge’s choice,” Tush said.

Phinny Nguy, a vendor at the event, said they enjoyed getting to know other people more and selling their merchandise.

“Talking to all of the people here and learning about the stories that they have through my art is enjoyable because I just love making people feel good about themselves,” Nguy said. “They wear the jewelry I’m wearing and it makes them feel like they have enough energy and enough confidence to conquer the day in the world.”

They said the main reason why they made this hand-crafted merchandise was to bring positive energy to others.

“The whole premise about this is that I want the amount of time, love, and passion that I put into each piece to be a reminder for people to wear it and treat themselves the same exact way,” Nguy said.

Vendors at the event sold collectables and products themed around many different anime franchises, but most were selling Studio Ghibli-themed merchandise.

The organizer of the event, Kimberly Lung, said the event was a great success and brought in many fans to celebrate the studio.

“Honestly, I think this turned out really well. I’m sure there will be a few complaints here and there, but I did my best to make it a comfortable shopping experience,” Lung said. “Vendors are happy. Lots of guests are happy. So I’m happy that a lot of families came. I just wanted this to be a very big thing that is easily accessible for everybody.”

However, she also said this may be the last one for her for a while.

“Honestly, I was kind of thinking about this being my last event. I’m focusing on opening my restaurant in the next three years,” Lung said

She said she would consider the community’s enjoyment of the event before making the final decision.

“I’m going to ask the vendors what they think about this because this is a big community thing for me,” Lung said. A lot of these vendors are my friends, so if they are down to do this again, then I am more than willing. We have the groundwork for the event. Everyone knows what to do at this point and yeah, I think we’ll see what the vendors think.”