Hayao Miyazaki started his career in 1963 as an animator at the studio Toei Doga, and was subsequently involved in many early classics of Japanese animation. In 1971, he moved to A Pro with Isao Takahata, then to Nippon Animation in 1973, where he was heavily involved in the TV animation series 'World Masterpiece Theater'. He directed his first TV series, 'Mirai Shonen Conan' in 1978, then moved to Tokyo Movie Shinsha to direct his first movie, 'Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro' in 1979.
In addition to his film work he has been working on several manga, starting with his 1969 story 'Nagakutsu wo Haita Neko' ('Puss in Boots'). He is best known for the epic manga 'Nauciäa of the Valley of the Wind', which he created between 1982 and 1994. The environmentalist theme of human's relationship with the ecology is typical for Miyazaki's work. Other manga by Miyazaki include 'Sabaku no Tami' ('People of the Desert'), 'Shuna no Tabi' ('The Journey of Shuna'), 'The Notebook of Various Images' and 'Hikoutei Jidai' ('The Age of the Flying Boat'), which was the basis of his 1992 film 'Porco Rosso'.
A film based on the 'Nausicäa' manga was released in 1984. The success of the film led to the establishment of a new animation studio, Studio Ghibli, at which Miyazaki has directed five feature-length films and produced another three in the years between 1986 and 1997. All of these films enjoyed box office and critical success. In particular, the Miyazaki-directed film 'Princess Mononoke' received the Japan Academy Award for Best Film and was their highest-grossing domestic film in history (about US $150 million).