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Howl's Moving Castle (2004)

Hauru no ugoku shiro (original title)
1:31 | Clip

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In 1 theater near Ashburn VA US [change]

When an unconfident young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, her only chance of breaking the spell lies with a self-indulgent yet insecure young wizard and his companions in his legged, walking castle.



(screenplay), (novel) (as Daiana Win Jônzu)
1,211 ( 61)
Top Rated Movies #137 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 14 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Chieko Baishô ...
Sofî (voice)
Hauru (voice)
Akihiro Miwa ...
Arechi no Majo (voice)
Tatsuya Gashûin ...
Karushifâ (voice)
Marukuru (voice)
Mitsunori Isaki ...
Koshô (voice)
Yô Ôizumi ...
Kakashi no Kabu (voice)
Kokuô (voice)
Daijirô Harada ...
Hin (voice)
Haruko Katô ...
Sariman (voice)
Grandma Sophie (voice)
Howl (voice)
Madame Suliman (voice)
Young Sophie (voice)


A love story between an 18-year-old girl named Sophie, cursed by a witch into an old woman's body, and a magician named Howl. Under the curse, Sophie sets out to seek her fortune, which takes her to Howl's strange moving castle. In the castle, Sophie meets Howl's fire demon, named Karishifâ. Seeing that she is under a curse, the demon makes a deal with Sophie--if she breaks the contract he is under with Howl, then Karushifâ will lift the curse that Sophie is under, and she will return to her 18-year-old shape. Written by Sophie Ball

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for frightening images and brief mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

17 June 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Howl's Moving Castle  »


Box Office


$24,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

JPY 1,444,469,305 (Japan), 21 November 2004, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$427,987, 12 June 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the Japanese version Chieko Baishô plays both Young and Grandma Sophie, while in the English dub it is split between Emily Mortimer as Young Sophie and Jean Simmons as Grandma Sophie. See more »


Sophie's top ribbon doesn't always reappear when she transforms back into her younger self. See more »


[Sophie removes Calcifer from the hearth]
Calcifer: No, No, No! Don't do this! Help! Help! Crazy lady with the shovel! If you kick me out that door, the castle could collapse!
Young Sophie: Good!
See more »


Referenced in Rango (2011) See more »


Sekai no Yakusoku
Written by Yumi Kimura
Performed by Chieko Baisho
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Another wonderful movie from Miyazaki
6 September 2004 | by See all my reviews

(first of all: sorry if my English is not the best out there, but it's not my native language)

I was lucky enough to see the world premiere (at Venice Film Festival, September 5, 2004).

Not only the art and animation is breathtaking (with almost no CGI), but the story is also above Miyazaki standards.

The characters are wonderful, each one with his (or her) own personality. Among them the best is for sure Calcifer, the Fire Demon, who is actually an almost all-powerful being, but is often underestimated by the other characters ("If you don't obey, I'll pour water on you!").

The music is one of the best parts of the movie. Even if you don't notice it, it is always there, always conveying the right feeling.

Bottom line: this is an excellent movie. If you liked other movies by Miyazaki (such as Mononoke Hime, Spirited Away, Laputa Castle in the Sky...) you cannot miss it.

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