Like the Clouds, Like the Wind (雲のように 風のように Kumo no yō ni Kaze no yō ni?) is a made-for-TV anime movie produced by Studio Pierrot for NTV and based on the novel by Ken'ichi Sakemi. It is often incorrectly thought to be produced by Studio Ghibli due to the character designs by Katsuya Kondō (who has worked on many Ghibli films), partially due to an error in its first fan translation that attributed the screenplay to Hayao Miyazaki instead of Akira Miyazaki, and the higher quality of the animation for a TV movie. However, Studio Ghibli had no involvement in the film.
Ginga is a simple—yet energetic—country girl, living with her father far from the capital city of the empire in ancient China. When she learns of an opportunity to become a concubine of the young new Emperor, with the possibility of becoming his head wife in charge of all of the other wives, Ginga convinces her father to let her go. Once there, she meets all of the other potential head wives, each of whom have various reasons for being there. All of them must learn to read and write, learn the history of their country, and learn the proper mannerisms for being in the royal court.
Ginga's enthusiasm tends to get her in trouble more often than not, but it works to her advantage when they learn that the former emperor's head wife, who is not the mother of the current emperor, is plotting treachery against the new emperor, and that a rebellion is headed toward the capital.
The novel, Inner Palace Harem Story (後宮小説 Kōkyū Shōsetsu?), won the first Japan Fantasy Novel Award in 1989, and then received sponsorship to become a film from Mitsui Real Estate. The novel has been released in both hardcover and bunkobon format.
- Hardcover, ISBN 4-10-375101-0, Shinchosha, March 5, 1989, ¥1200
- Bunkobon, ISBN 4-10-128111-4, Shinchosha, April 25, 1993, ¥480
Kumo Kaze, as it is sometimes called, had its premier broadcast on March 21, 1990 during the vernal equinox national holiday, and was shown in an unprecedented no-commercials presentation. The movie was released on Region 2 DVD in 2002. There is no commercial English language release.
Kumo no yō ni Kaze no yō ni