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Jiro Ramen

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Focal Press’s excellent “Film Craft” books series ( see Cinematography, Directing, Production Design ) continue with Editing, again featuring illuminating interviews and anecdotes from the very best editors working in the industry.

Some of the editors showcased include Walter Murch (The Godfather, The English Patient), Anne V. Coates ( Lawrence Of Arabia, Unfaithful ), Tim Squyres ( Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Life Of Pi ), Michael Kahn ( most of Spielberg’s films ) and more. ( 17 in all )

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Miyazaki Hayao’s latest animated film Kaze Tachinu (The Wind Rises) will start its domestic run in Japan from the 20th of July and publicity for the film has been in full swing for a while. I’ve collected a few clips in this post for your enjoyment, beginning with the trailer right below :

(above) Next up is a clip from the sound recording studio with Hideaki Anno (yes, the director of Evangelion) up as the voice of the lead character Jiro Horikoshi. Voice recording sessions are called “Ah-fu-re-ko” in Japan.

Part of the conversation between Anno-san and Miyazaki-san :

Anno-san : “I’ll do my best. (for the voice recordings) I can’t promise anything more !”

Miyazaki-san : “That’s fine. Suzuki-san (famous Ghibli producer) will take over you if can’t manage.” (Suzuki-san laughs in the background)

In their conversation, Miyazaki-san addresses Hideaki Anno as just “Anno”, without the honorific “-san”. If there’s anyone with the authority to do that, it’d be Miyazaki-san. :P

(above) In this next clip, Ghibli producer Suzuki-san makes an appearance on a Japanese variety program to promote the film and gives some background information regarding the story & characters.

The hiragana characters splashed acrossed the poster is handwritten by Suzuki-san, and is the tagline for the film “Ikineba” (loosely translating as “live on”).

The lead character Jiro Horikoshi is actually a combination of 2 historical characters that Miyazaki-san highly respect – the novelist Hiro Tatsuo & and the chief engineering of the WWII Japanese “Zero” fighter plane.

Suzuki-san also goes on the explain that all the sound effects (engines of the plane, etc) in the film are synthesized by voice actors. This is actually not new to Ghibli films as it has been done before on the Ghibli Museum short “House Searching”.

(above) Suzuki-san talks to actress Miori Takimoto, who voices the female lead Naoko Satomi, and also some behind the scenes in the voice recording studio. Apparently Miori-san was recommended for the role by Miyazaki-san’s mentor Takahata-san.

The storyboard book (drawn by Miyazaki-san) for Kaze Tachinu is now up for pre-orders on Amazon Japan, going on sale later in July. I believe the last storyboard book that Miyazaki-san drew was for Ponyo, and that was just spectacular.

I hope to get a copy of Kaze Tachinu soon to do a review.

Kaze Tachinu will take a while to reach screens outside of Japan, but I’m sure it’ll be worth it.

Sidenote : Otomo Katsuhiro’s animated film Short Peace is also starting it’s run on 20th of July. While the target audience/demographic is not exactly the same, its definitely going to face stiff competition from a Ghibli film.

Related Posts:

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  2. Studio Ghibli Layout Exhibition – A preview

  3. The Art Of Porco Rosso Book Review

  4. Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea

  5. Studio Ghibli – Brutus Magazine Special Part I
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A few months ago I posted a teaser trailer for the omnibus animation project by Otomo Katsuhiro, with renowned animation directors like Koji Morimoto, Hiroaki Ando and Morita Shuhei each helming a short.

Now the official website has been updated to include director interviews, image galleries and concept art for each animated short, and not the least a gorgeous splash page montage as you see above. (the tagline reads something like : “This is where it all starts.”)

Check out some images from the gallery and scroll down to the bottom for the latest trailer.

Folks familiar with Otomo-san’s work will recognize “Farewell To Weapons” (Buki Yo Saraba) as one of the short stories found in his Memories manga. Character design for this short is handled by the incredibly talented concept designer/illustrator Tatsuyuki “Cannabis Works” Tanaka. In addition, character design work for Gambo, directed by Hiroaki Ando ( co-director of Tekkon Kinkreet ) is none other than Sadamoto Yoshiyuki.

This project is shaping up to be one of the more exciting anime films of late, and especially because many of the artists involved are colleagues I worked with on Freedom Project.

The film starts its theatrical run on the 20th of July. Go here for the official page.

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  1. Short Peace – Otomo Katsuhiro’s New Animated Film Trailer

  2. Short Peace – Otomo Katsuhiro + Shuhei Morita

  3. Freedom Seven Trailer

  4. Otomo Katsuhiro Genga Exhibition

  5. GODAIZER Animation Short Singapore Premier
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Issue 3 of the Japanese magazine Animestyle ( read earlier posts for Issue 1 and Issue 2 ), the contents include articles on anime Tamago Market, MS Gundam UC, interviews with director Akiyuki Shinbo, Yoshinari Yo, and more.

(above & below) Some character sheets from the anime Little Witch Academia that has been getting quite a bit of attention as of late. I’ve seen only snippets but the quality of animation is fantastic.

(above) Genga from Studio 4C’s 3rd Berserk animated film. 2 artbooks here & here have been released for the film, but I’ve not had the chance yet to check out their contents. (below) A short article on the Kickstarter anime project Kick Heart. Read more here.

“Animestyle Magazine Issue 3 “ details :

Dimensions – 10.1 x 7.2 x 0.6 inches
Soft cover, 185 pages.
Color, B&W sketches, in Japanese

You might also be interested in these items :

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This is a pretty rare one – a book dedicated to just the layout boards from Mamoru Oshii’s highly acclaimed animated film Patlabor II The Movie. The book (published in 1994) has been out of print for a long time and only used copies are found on Amazon Japan.

This book is probably targeted at more dedicated fans and people studying layout in animation – the semantics used in the captions accompanying each board are pretty esoteric and technical in nature. (below) Some locations in Tokyo used as references in the film – those slum-like structures on stilts are probably not around anymore I think – Tokyoites correct me if I’m wrong.

I bought this book because I’m so in love with Patlabor ( both the feature films and the TV series ). Even if you aren’t particularly familiar with how layout works in Japanese animation – those boards still look pretty cool.

“Methods – Layouts from Patlabor The Movie 2″ art book details :

Dimensions – 0.2 x 22 x 1.4 cm
Soft cover, 178 pages
Mostly in B&W with select colored pages, in Japanese

There is also a similar book for Mamoru Oshii’s Ghost In The Shell : Innocence film. Now this one I’ve never seen in stores or even 2nd hand bookstores like BookOff; must be really rare. You can get a used copy from Amazon too – the link can be found below.

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  2. Patlabor TV Series Art Book Review

  3. Patlabor TV Series / Movie Blu-rays

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  5. Patlabor Artbook – The Labor Industry
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