top of page
Ghibli Museum, Hayao Miyazaki

TV, Anime, Film & Locations

Search Topics:

Icon Key:

This indicates a link is in Japanese only.

Movie Set in Kyoto, Japan
Anime scenery, manga
family seal, Kamon
Totoro and Ghibli goods and merchandise
Movie Lots

TV, Anime, Film & Locations

Manga Town 3.jpg

Movie Lots

There are three significant movie lots you can visit in Japan. Each lot has outdoor sets that look like old merchant shops and Samurai homes where period movies and TV series are filmed. Because these movie lots are still operational, you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of some actors in Samurai and ninja costumes. During your visit, you can rent various costumes and become an Emperor or Ninja for a day. One movie lot, called Toei Kyoto, also functions as a theme park that primarily caters to tourists. 

Recommended Resources

TV Shows 

TV Stations

TV stations

There are many TV Stations in Japan that allow for the public to tour behind the scenes. For families, many of the stations have fun kids activities.

Recommended Resources

Movie Locations

Movie Locations

Are you interested in Japanese films? All or parts of the following films were shot in Japan. 

 

Hollywood Movies

Lost in Translation: Filmed in Shinjuku, Shibuya, and Park Hyatt

The Fast & The Furious Tokyo Drift: Filmed the racing scenes in Harajuku, Shinjuku, and Shibuya with special effects. 

 

Those two films and Resident Evil-Afterlife were shot in the famous Shibuya scramble crossing. Other significant films in Japan are Memories of Geisha, The Wolverine, Inception, Snowden, G.I Joe: Rise of the Cobra, Babel, The Last Samurai, and 007 Skyfall. 

JW Web Magazine shows you the exact locations. 

 

Japanese Films

Shoplifters: Filmed at Nihon University Surugadai Campus, inside Kominato Railway train. 

This movie was produced as part of the 2018 Cannes Film Festival, was the winner of the Palm d’Or, and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Perhaps the most memorable scene is the family going to the beach. It was shot at the Ohara Beaches in the Chiba prefecture. 

 

Departure: Filmed in Sakata City in Yamagata prefecture.  Departure is an Oscar-winning movie in the Best Foreign Language film category in 2009. In this movie, Daigo plays his cello at the river bank with the Chokaizan mountain in the background. This scene was filmed at the Gekkogawa River Park in Yuza.

 

The Twilight Samurai: Many scenes were shot in the Shonai region in Yamagata prefecture. 

The film was nominated for The Oscar for Best Foreign Language film at the 76th Academy Awards. It won 12 Japanese Academy Awards. Seibei’s and his colleagues' homes are Matsumoto and Iwahashi family residences in Kakunodate, Akita

 

Battle Royal is based on Hachijo Kojima island, Tokyo

Kikujiro: They shot many scenes in the Asakusa area of Tokyo. The Sakurabashi Bridge over the Sumida River is seen in the film's opening and ending scene.

Drive My Car: at the top: This Academy Award winner in foreign language film was shot in Hiroshima. You can visit Oogonsan mountain, Grand Price Hotel Hiroshima, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, Orizuru Tower 

Manga & Anime Pilgrimage

Manga & Animation

Anime Pilgrimage
What a fun way to explore Japan is through animation! Many scenes in Japanese animation films are based on real-life locations. How many sets do you recognize? 

Recommended Resources

Manga Town 1.JPG

Ghibli Studio Films

Matcha has a good list of places for Hayao Miyazaki fans. Here are some examples and more.

 

Spirited Away:

Several places inspired this feature animation. A number of these locations are a town called Jiufen in Taipei, Dogo Onsen Honkan in Matsuyama, Kagawa, and the Edo Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum

 

Princess Mononoke

The model of the iron-making plant is in Shimane. The inspiration for the forest is Aomori, Akita, and Yakushima Island, Kagoshima.

 

Totoro

Sayama Hills in Saitama/Tokyo. You can visit Kurosuke’s house

 

Whisper of the Heart

The story is based in the neighborhood of Seiseki Sakuragaoka station in Keio Line. Once you get out of the station, you see the information board that tells you the central locations featured in the animation. 

 

When Manie Was There is inspired by Kushiro Wetlands National Park
 

Animation/Manga Museums, shops, cafes, and trains 

Recommended Resources

Here are lists of places to visit. There are many fantastic Animation theme parks/Manga museums outside of Tokyo, too.

  •  Ghibli Park , Nagakute, Aichi Prefecture: One of the most anticipated theme park. Sol Life has a great video of her visit to the park.

  • Ghibli Museum, Mitaka, TokyO: If you don't have time to visit Ghibli Park, go to this museum. you can immerse yourself in the world of ghibli. Be sure to get totoro cream puff at Shiro-Hige puff factory for delicious cream puffs, bu by Miyazaki's brother. 
  • Naruto-Nijigen no Mori, Awaji city, Hyogo Prefecture. Paolo has a great video of his visit to the them park. 
  • Universal Studio Japan, Osaka City. This famous theme park in Japan always offers fun animation-related attractions in addition to Super Nintendo World, such as Demon Slayer (Kimetsu No Yaiba) and Detective Conan 4D Live show.
  • Manga Town: Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture: In 1995, the Mayor of Ishinomaki City and Shotaro Ishinomori came up with the “Manga Land Concept.” Shotaro was born in Miyazaki Prefecture and spent lots of time in Ishinomaki City in his youth. He was one of the most famous manga artists in Japan. His work includes “Cyborg 009” and “Kamen Rider,” “Robocon,” to name a few. In the Museum you can enjoy the exhibits of his work and participate in events and workshops.  

  • Fujiko Fujio Museum Kawasaki City, Kanagawa

  • Kita Kushu Manga Museum in Kitakyushu, Fukuoka Prefecture. 

  • Go Nagai Wonderland Museum in Wajima City, Ishikawa Prefecture. 

  • The Tezuka Osamu Museum Takarazuka City, Osaka Prefecture. 

Manga & Anime museums, shops, trains.

Anime Characters shops

Tokyo Station Character Street

 

GBL Miyashita Park

Tokyo Animation Center

Pokemon Center in Tokyo. 

Pokemon Center in Osaka, and Kyoto. 

Nintendo

 

Ghibli boutique for adult fans. Order online and have them ship to your hotel if you’re not going to Tokyo. For young fans, they can purchase toys at the Ghibli store/Donguri Kyowakoku at Tokyo Station Character Street.

 

Trip 101

 

Mandarake

Comics, Anime Scripts, toys and more

Japan-Guide has excellent lists for recommended shops. 

Pokemon Store.jpeg

Manga Anime Trains

  • Pokemon With You Train: Pokemon runs between Kesennuma in Miyagi Prefecture: Omunomu has a great video of the train ride.

  • Hello, Kitty Shinkansen runs between Shin-Osaka and Hakata.   

  • Doraemon Light Rail runs in Takaoka City, Toyama.

This English Language Film School Website 

has additional information for movie and animation fans on where to visit while in Japan.

Activities & Interests

Discover Topics

Apps_edited.jpg

Useful Tips & Apps

Torii, Japanese traditional gate, arch in shrines and temples
bottom of page