Grave Of The Fireflies' Movie Poster Has A Hidden (And Depressing) Secret

Image: Studio Ghibli , Madman

Grave of the Fireflies is one of the saddest movies ever made. Decades after its original release, people have discovered a haunting, hidden image in the Japanese movie poster.

Attention has been re-focused on Grave of the Fireflies after director Isao Takahata’s recent passing. Grave of the Fireflies is a 1988 Studio Ghibli movie about two children in Japan during World War II.


Here is the Japanese poster in question. It looks like main characters Seita and Setsuko are playing with fireflies, right?

But if you look closely at the top of the poster...


...or alter the poster’s color...


There appears to be a B29 hidden in the blackness.


If you alter the color further, you can see that there’s the round glowing light of fireflies at the bottom contrasted with what appears to be bullets or firebombs raining down.


This poster is perhaps more famous, and it’s also depressing as hell, but doesn’t quite pack the same emotional punch upon closer inspection.

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About the author

Brian Ashcraft

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored five books, including most recently, Japanese Whisky: The Ultimate Guide to the World's Most Desirable Spirit.