Ryuichi Sakamoto was a legendary musician in Japan.
He passed away in this 2023 but left many great music.
Among them, did he also leave any music for Ghibli anime?
I know some people wonder.
Here I’ll tell you about if he made music for Ghibli and other anime.
Was there any anime music Ryuichi Sakamoto made for Ghibli?
In conclusion, Ryuichi Sakamoto didn’t make any music for Ghibli anime.
Then, why people often ask this question?
If I say, his ex-wife Akiko Yano made music for Ghibli.
It was for “My Neighbor Yamada”.
This My Neighbor Yamada was made in 1999 by Ghibli Studio.
And the theme song was made by Akiko Yano.
If you know “Nausicaa of the valley of the wind” released in 1984, Ryuichi Sakamoto was named as a possible candidate for the music.
But Jyo Hisaishi was selected in the end.
Another Ghibli film he might have been offered proposition was The Tale of The Princess Kaguya.
In an interview of documentary film Ryuichi Sakamoto: CODA in 2018, he said he met with Isao Takahata (Director) a couple years ago but the music he made was too serious and didn’t please Isao Takahata that he couldn’t compose music in the end.
You might image Hayao Miyazaki as a director of Ghibli film but some Ghibli films were made by other directors.
I can say if there was a chance Ryuichi Sakamoto could compose music, they were Nausicaa of the valley of the wind and The Tale of The Princess Kaguya.
Ryuichi Sakamoto made any anime music?
Although Ryuichi Sakamoto didn’t make music for Ghibli, he made some music for other anime.
There are 3 anime, so I’ll introduce each anime.
Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise (1987)
First one is “Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise”.
It was sci-fi action anime released in 1987.
Ryuichi Sakamoto composed the music of the anime.
I remember I saw storyboard or something of this anime somewhere recently.
Actually, 4k remastered ver. of Royal Space Force was made last year (2022 November).
Although this was the first anime music Ryuichi Sakamoto composed, he said that he didn’t like the music very much in an interview of documentary film Ryuichi Sakamoto: CODA in 2018.
Looks like he couldn’t do his best at the time because of the complicated situation of the anime studio.
My TYRANO: Together Forever
“My TYRANO: Together Forever” is the anime film released in 2021 December.
This was originally a picture book by a picture book artist Miyanishi Tatsuya.
Ryuichi Sakamoto has composed music for the animation for the first time in 33 years since Royal Space Force.
He got an offer from Tezuka Productions.
If you are a fan of old Japanese comics, I think you know Osamu Tezuka.
He is a legendary comic writer.
Ryuichi Sakamoto was a big fan of his comics since he was a child.
No wonder he accepted the offer pleasantly.
He said it was a challenge to make easy-to-understand music even for children in an interview.
He added that music of anime for children tends to be simple and mediocre but he also didn’t make the music like that for this anime.
That was the challenging part, he said.
Another one and last one Ryuichi Sakamoto composed music for was “exception”.
It is an original anime of Netflix started in 2022 October.
This anime was also science fiction anime like Royal Space Force.
He said that he decided to participate in this project because he originally loved science fiction and he felt like he wanted to see the animation after reading the script.
I watched exception a little bit and the music was beautiful.
Top of it, the characters were designed by Yoshitaka Amano.
If you know video game Final Fantasy, I think you already know him as he is the original designer of the characters of Final Fantasy.
OST is also released and he said he himself was pleased with the music.
After all Ryuichi Sakamoto didn’t any music for Ghibli but made music for some anime.
He made music for “Royal Space Force”, “My TYRANO” and “exception”.
Music of exception in 2022 was the last one he made, six months before he leaves the world.
Until last moment, he was into his career, music.
I know this is typical to say but certainly his music would keep living and I would keep remembering him when I see the films.
Ryuichi Sakamoto and Anime Music Works
Official YouTube Channel of Ryuichi Sakamoto
Website of Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise
Website of My TYRANO: Together Forever
Official Trailer of exception (YouTube)