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 is a 1979 Japanese animated film co-written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. It is one of the master thief Lupin III films.

The second animated Lupin III movie and arguably the most famous, Castle of Cagliostro was written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki (who also co-directed the first Lupin III TV series and directed two episodes of the second) before he formed Studio Ghibli. Cagliostro features gentleman thief Lupin III, grandson to Maurice Leblanc's French literary master thief Arsène Lupin.

Originally subtitled by Metro-Goldwyn Mayer and then dubbed and released in 1991 by Streamline Pictures, a new dub was recorded by Manga Entertainment in 2000 and changed the tone of many characters.

The title alludes to La Comtesse de Cagliostro (The Countess of Cagliostro, the title of an original Arsène Lupin adventure by Maurice Leblanc).


Arsène Lupin III and Daisuke Jigen are escaping pursuit after robbing the national casino of Monacomarker, only to discover shortly after their escape that their entire haul is counterfeit. The bills are of a very high quality and could be none other than the legendary 'goat bills', perfect counterfeits that have been used to rock the economies of nations since the invention of paper money. When Lupin was just getting started as a professional thief, he was almost killed while searching for the source of the goat bills. He decides that it is time to take another chance, and the two head off to the purported source of the bills, the Principality of Cagliostro.

Shortly after arriving, they rescue a young girl from a car full of thugs, only to let her get captured again when Lupin is knocked unconscious after tumbling down a cliff. They later discover that she is Clarisse, princess of Caliostro and is engaged to be married to the Count, the countries ruler. The count wants to recover the ancient treasure of the Cagliostro family, and needs the princess's ring to do so; however, it was accidentally left behind with Lupin.

Realizing he will need more help after he is attacked by a group of the count's elite assassins, Lupin calls on his other partner, Goemon Ishikawa XIII, and tips off longtime foe Inspector Koichi Zenigata to his whereabouts. He also find his former lover, Fujiko Mine, posing as Clarisse's lady-in-waiting. Using a party and Zenigata as a distraction, Lupin makes his way to the tower where Clarisse is kept, returns her ring, and promises to help her to escape. She shows doubts in his capabilities, which dismays him, but in the end, he wins her over. The count arrives shortly thereafter with his assassins; Lupin mocks him until he is dropped down a trapdoor into the bowels of the castle.

The count grabs Clarisse and removes the ring, which turns out to be a practical joke left by Lupin. Infuriated, the Count flushes him deeper into the cellars, which are full of bodies of spies who attempted to learn the secrets of Cagliostro and the goat bills. While down there, Lupin bumps into Inspector Zenigata, who was accidentally thrown down earlier. The two reluctantly form a pact to help escape. When count dispatches two elite soldiers with aqualungs to retrieve the ring, Lupin and Zenigata trick them with two skeletons in their clothes. Eventually snagging the aqualungs, Zenigata and Lupin escape the dungeons.

Their escape leads them to the printing presses, where Lupin and Zenigata finally discover the source of the goat bills. Zenigata wants to find evidence, but Lupin points out they must escape first. They set the money and presses on fire as a distraction and steal the count's autogyro. However, when they attempt to return to rescue Clarisse, Lupin is shot and critically wounded. Clarisse offers her ring to the count in exchange for Lupin's life; the count's attempt at betrayal is foiled when Fujiko's quick actions lead to an escape for her, Lupin, and Zenigata.

While Lupin recovers from his injury and plans his next scheme, Zenigata attempts to convince his superiors at Interpolmarker to expose the count and his counterfeiting ring. They do not want to cause an international incident, as many world powers have called on the goat bills, and order Zenigata and his men to pull out of Cagliostro, much to his dismay.

The wedding appears to go on as planned with a drugged Clarisse until Lupin's "ghost" disrupts the ceremony. When the count calls down his guards on the ghost, Lupin, actually disguised as the presiding bishop, manages to make off with Clarisse and both rings. While Jigen and Goemon hold off the count's assassins and Zenigata exposes the count's counterfeiting to the world with help from Fujiko, Lupin and Clarisse flee the count, a chase that ends on top of the castle clock tower. Finally gaining the rings after knocking away Lupin and Clarisse, the count uses them on the clock tower's face as instructed by Lupin, only to be crushed to death by the clocks hands as the mechanisms move to unveil the treasure.

Lupin and Clarisse, who have safely landed in the lake, are able to watch with the others as the lake around the castle drains to reveal exquisite Roman ruins. Declaring this treasure is "too big for his pocket", Lupin and his friends take their leave of Clarisse, now ruler of Cagliostro, as Zenigata chases after them again and Fujiko makes off with the printing plates from the counterfeit money presses.


Some fans of the original manga version of Lupin III dislike this movie as Lupin comes across as too good-natured where the original Lupin III was a cynical, playboy character. In the film, Lupin does refer to his original manga personality, but he states that he was only like that as a cocky youth. Monkey Punch mentioned he particularly liked the film, although he did not quite agree with Miyazaki's interpretation. The film was the best selling anime DVD in May 2001, and the third best selling in June.

Both of Manga Entertainment's releases of The Castle of Cagliostro received DVD Talk Collector Series recommendation status, the highest status given by the review website Chris Beveridge of gave the film a grade of "A+", although he disliked Manga Entertainment's use of PG-13 level language in the English dub. The Castle of Cagliostro placed in 5th place on Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs's list of best anime.


In 1979, Toho released the original theatrical version. In 1991, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer created a subtitled version for American theatres. MGM/UA Home Video released the film on VHS in 1992 (dubbed by Carl Macek's Streamline Pictures), and Best Film and Video Corp. released it on VHS in 1993 (again using the Streamline dub) Manga Entertainment in Australia and the UK purchased the license for the movie, using the Streamline dub. Then Manga Entertainment purchased the license for the movie from MGM in 1995 and has been in Manga's North American, Australian and English catalogues ever since. But Manga Entertainment lost the license in Australia to Manga's Distributor in 2007 to Madman Entertainment, whose DVD release featured the Streamline dub with anamorphic widescreen video and artwork exclusive to both the Australian and UK releases. Manga's previous version of Castle of Cagliostro in Australia was rejected by most of the anime critics there and was eventually pulled from Manga's and Madman's catalogues. In 2000, Manga Entertainment created an all-new dub.

1992 VHS cover

Streamline's dub, while lauded for the overall acting talent of the voice cast, has been widely criticized for its picture cropping and retiming of the opening credits to remove all traces of Japanese writings, as well as for liberties taken with the translation of its dialogue.

Manga's new dub of Cagliostro has been praised for its overall faithfulness to the original Japanese dialogue, but criticized for its addition of profanity in some scenes. In addition, Manga's original DVD release has been criticized for lacking an anamorphic transfer or any extras apart from previews for other Manga Video releases, and in the way its English titles are hard-matted onto the film's video image, obscuring parts of the screen behind them.

Optimum Releasing re-released Cagliostro in the UK after Manga Entertainment lost its license in the UK. The new DVD features an anamorphic widescreen print with the original Japanese audio track as well as the Streamline dub, both in stereo.

As noted in DVD Aficionado and The Right Stuf, Manga released a new special edition DVD of Cagliostro in 2006. The disc is double-sided with the movie on side A and the extras on side B. It includes a new digital transfer; Manga's English dub in 2.0 and 5.1 surround plus Japanese, Spanish, and French language tracks in mono; the complete movie in storyboard format, accompanied by Japanese audio with English subtitles; an original Japanese trailer; a sketch and still gallery; a 26-minute interview with animation director Yasuo Ōtsuka, and animated menus. The movie is presented in 16:9 anamorphic widescreen; however, the opening credits, which feature Lupin and Jigen slowly making their way across Europe to the song "Fire Treasure", have been heavily re-edited to remove the Japanese credits, instead using selected still-frames of scenes that appear without Japanese writing. The English-translated names are superimposed over these stills. (This modified credits sequence is also present on the 2007 Australian DVD release by Madman Entertainment.) The DVD packaging of this special edition is strongly reminiscent of that of Disney's Studio Ghibli film releases.

In December 2008, a Blu-ray Disc package was released in Japan. Its video format is MPEG-4 AVC and its digitally-remastered audio is improved over that of the DVD.[13515]


Castle of Cagliostro, along with its title, includes elements that were seen in other Arsène Lupin works. One such tale, La Justice d'Arsène Lupin by Boileau-Narcejac, involves the discovery of a tremendous stash of forged franc notes with which World War I–era Germanymarker had planned to destabilize the French economy.Maurice Leblanc's The Green-eyed Lady also featured a secret treasure hidden at the bottom of a lake.

Gary Trousdale, co-director of Disney's Atlantis: The Lost Empire, admitted that a scene at the end of Atlantis, where the waters recede from the sunken city, was directly inspired by a similar scene from Cagliostro. One of the sequence directors of The Simpsons Movie also mentioned Cagliostro as an influence; the scene where Bart rolls down the roof was inspired by Lupin running down the castle roof during his rescue attempt.

Footage from this movie, along with the previous Lupin movie Secret of Mamo, appear in the 1983 laser disk video game Cliff Hanger.


Character Name Original English dub [Streamline] English dub [Manga]
Lupin III Yasuo Yamada Bob Bergen David Hayter
Daisuke Jigen Kiyoshi Kobayashi Steve Bulen John Snyder
Goemon Ishikawa XIII Makio Inoue Steve Kramer Richard Epcar
Fujiko Mine Eiko Masuyama Edie Mirman Dorothy Elias-Fahn
Inspector Koichi Zenigata Goro Naya David Povall Dougary Grant
Count Cagliostro Tarō Ishida Michael McConnohie Kirk Thornton
Lady Clarisse d'Cagliostro Sumi Shimamoto Joan-Carol O'Connell Bridget Hoffman
The groundskeeper Kōhei Miyauchi Mike Reynolds Barry Stigler
Jodo Ichirō Nagai Jeff Winkless Milton James
Gustav Tadamichi Tsuneizumi Kirk Thornton Joe Romersa
Waitress Yoko Yamaoka Juliana Donald Bambi Darro


  1. Lupin III - TV & Castle of Cagliostro FAQ

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