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●TALK● CONVERSATION with SOGO ISHII




The magazine Scenario (シナリオ) No.405/ Vol.38 No.4 features a conversation between Katsuhiro Otomo and film director Shogo Ishii that took place on January 26, 1982. 


MAGAZINE DETAILS 

Publisher: Writers Association of Japan (シナリオ作家協会)
Release date: 1982-IV-1
Language: Japanese
Number of pages: 156
Size: A5
Retail price: ¥700





TALK Katsuhiro Otomo & Sogo Ishii

COMICS, ROCK, AND ABSOLUTE FILM.


Manga and Cinema

Sogo Ishii: I used your manga RUN to film Shuffle, and it suddenly strikes me I still haven't paid you for that...

Katsuhiro Otomo: If you'd made a huge profit I wouldn't mind a share, but otherwise, to be honest I'm just pleased something drawn by me has turned out interesting on screen.

Ishii: It wasn't my intention to do anything on so grand a scale, but as shooting progressed I got carried away ... The screening in December (at the Seibu Gekijo in Shibuya) was just the premiere, and I've yet to decide how it will be released properly.

Otomo: I was a little busy last December and couldn't make it - got tied up with revisions on Kibun wa mo senso.

lshii: It's been altered slightly from the original, but I do hope you can watch it sometime soon. Was Shuffle the first of your manga to be released as a movie?

Otomo: Ninkyo Cinema Club ("Koukou Erotopia Akai Seifuku" released May 1979) was made into a film by Nikkatsu. When I read the script and asked if they could rewrite it, they told me the movie was already in the can (laughs).

Ishii: I was in the athletics club at school, so knew all about the act of running (like the main character in Shuffle), and had a screen version in mind as soon as I read the original. 

Otomo: I have to think now, what motivated me to draw RUN ... ? That's right, the 22  or 23 year-old hero runs, and while running things come back to him, like what he thought about at junior high school, and his life up to this point. But in the manga the middle section of the story is missing: there's a part where a gir1 is watching him at a junior high sports day, isn't there? I wanted to expand on that more.

lshii: Well the film does expand on it - it's the climax.

Otomo: The plot has to have twists and turns, and I had a yakuza story, with him killing his superior, and wanted to show the things coming back to him while he was running. Unfortunately there weren't enough pages.

lshii: Shuffle is intended, at least, to fall into the "hard-boiled" category. My aim was to pursue the possibilities for noir of this kind in Japan. I guess it's a bit cheeky of me, but actually I'd been hoping to work with you for a long time. I like the artwork, the ideas. and the dialogue in your manga, but especially the plots. Your plots are amazing. They unfold in such an incredibly cinematic fashion. How do you put them together?

Otomo: When I'm thinking up the story, I run it in my head as if making a movie. The thing with manga though is that you only have a limited number of pages. There are always all sorts of scenes I'd like to include, but can't. Which can be frustrating. I've been doing this for quite a while now, so I know where to cut, make sure there are plenty of twists and drama, and think about what to show, but when it comes to what kind of characters to portray, the main ones just seem to move of their own accord. So I do devise a story, but don't let myself be too bound to it. My protagonists are, I suspect, parts of me, and it all comes down to how I personally would behave.

Ishii: You tend to have a lot of supporting characters woven very cleverly into the narrative. What's your secret there?

Otomo: Ah, well now, there's a jazz band that goes by the name Weather Report, and on their records the main melody emerges first, then they all perform the melody with great gusto, then after a while the bass starts to do something else, and they begin to improvise. But the rhythm hangs in there, and at the end, just when you think the original form has been lost, for some reason that first melody appears again. Maybe composing a plot is a bit like that.

Ishii: Take for example the endings of When the Saints Go Marching In, or WHISKY-GOGO: those last visuals are totally unexpected in light of how the plot has unfolded up to that point. I don't think that's something you can write into a screenplay. I tend to film without finalizing the last scene. I do write something (in the script), but really that's not such a good idea. As I shoot symbolic frames come to mind, and It seems to work best if I leave those until last to decide. I also wonder if maybe it's the characters.

Otomo: Each character has its own dramas, so it's a matter of connecting those dramas in the right way (laughs).

Ishii: When you speak of Weather Report I think I know what you mean. For my part, lately I've been playing rock all the time. I find listening to rock music gives the story more oomph than just sitting there pondering the composition. The ad libbing of movement, freedom I guess you'd call it, the beauty of that can only emerge during actual shooting. It's hard to put down in writing. 

Last film?

Ishii: When did you publish your first manga?

Otomo: When I was at high school, I took some stuff I'd drawn to Morimi Murano-san, and there just happened to be an editor from (Manga) Action there, who asked me if I'd like to have a go working for them. But at high school I wasn't especially bothered with manga; movies were my thing. I wanted to make movies, but that didn't seem realistic and it struck me that with manga I might somehow manage to make my own way in the world, earn enough to buy the odd drink (laughs). These days it's film that I want to do. I've had enough of manga. With manga, you know how it's going to go before you even start drawing. You've got this many pages, this story, and only this many days to do it in. Meaning, you work it all out in your head beforehand, so there's no tension.

Ishii: Which there is in films. Plenty. And all the time. You say this might be your last movie (laughs). Film does require perseverance, doesn't it?

Otomo: Indeed it does. I tried doing a little shooting myself, which was good even just to make me realize how I'd underestimated the effort involved.

Ishii: So is that finished?

Otomo: No, unfortunately the actor went out and found a proper job. It was Daimakyo. I wrote the script, did the storyboards ... bit of a shame really. I'd like to do a film. 

Ishii: I'd soon give you a hand. About thirty minutes is a good length to start with. Although you never seem to be able to make the exact movie in your head. 

Otomo: I sensed that. I managed to shoot about thirty minutes of Daimakyo, and that's only a third of it.


●BOOK● Kibun Wa Moo Sensoo ( 気分はもう戦争)



Kibun wa moo sensoo (気分はもう戦争) is a Manga written by Yahagi Toshihiko (矢作俊彦) and illustrated by Katsuhiro Otomo (大友克洋) that was published in Weekly Manga Action ( 週刊漫画アクション) from April 1980 to November 1981. This book collects every episode but one, published monthly in this magazine.



BOOK DETAILS

Publisher: Futabasha (双葉社)
Release date: 1982-I-24
Language: Japanese
Number of pages: 334
Size: A5 
Retail price: ¥800
ISBN: 4-575-93031-8
ISBN: 978-4-575-93031-3


AVAILABILITY

Amazon JP: http://amzn.to/YjDeoj
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1EpI82w
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/1O4HuiS
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1wYFKSY
Amazon DE: http://amzn.to/1wYFHGR
Amazon FR: http://amzn.to/1BOJIMX
Amazon IT: http://amzn.to/1EpI2be
Amazon ES: http://amzn.to/1wYFAuR


COLLECTED EPISODES
(気分はもう戦争 - AROUND THE LINE) part 1
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-IV-10
22 pages | B/W


KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - AROUND THE LINE 
(気分はもう戦争 - AROUND THE LINE) part 2
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-IV-17
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - POP-EYED SALESMAN 
(気分はもう戦争 - POP-EYED SALESMAN)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-V-15
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO -MONKEY BUSINESS 
(気分はもう戦争 - MONKEY BUSINESS)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-VI-12
30 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - UMI NI SHINKU NO NAGAREBOSHI 
(気分はもう戦争 - 海に真紅の流れ星)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-VII-10
22 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - MONKEY SUITS 
(気分はもう戦争 - MONKEY SUITS)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-VIII-7
22 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - TSUBASA YO ANO AKARI WA DOKO DAROU 
(気分はもう戦争 - 翼よ あの灯はどこだろう)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-IX-11
22 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - CHŪ SO SENSŌ O YORI ISSŌ O TANOSHIMIITADAKU TAME NI 
(気分はもう戦争 - 中ソ戦争をより一層お楽しみいただく為に) 
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-X-9
16 pages | B/W
NOT COLLECTED IN THIS BOOK

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - TAKE THE TRAIN 
(気分はもう戦争 - TAKE 6 TRAIN) part 1
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-XII-18
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - TAKE THE TRAIN 
(気分はもう戦争 - TAKE 6 TRAIN) part 2
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1980-XII-25
22 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - MONKEY A GO GO 
(気分はもう戦争 - MONKEY A GO GO)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-III-19
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - BANGAI HEN TAIHEIYŌ NO JIGOKU 
(気分はもう戦争 - 番外編 太平洋の地獄)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-IV-23
14 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - MONELY SHINE
(気分はもう戦争 - MONKEY SHINE)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-V-18
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - MONKEY'S ARROWANCE 
(気分はもう戦争 - MONKEY'S ARROWANCE)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-VII-16
20 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - SAISHŪ KAI ( SONO ICHI ) SARABA ITOSHIKI KUNIGUNI YO 
(気分はもう戦争 - 最終回 (その1) さらば愛しき国々よ)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-VIII-13
16 pages | B/W

KIBUN WA MOO SENSOO - HONTO NO SAISHŪ KAI 
(気分はもう戦争 - ホントの最終回)
Weekly Manga Action (週刊漫画アクション) 1981-XI-19
19 pages | B/W


OTHER JAPANESE EDITIONS


This episodes were re-released in a bigger size book by Kadokawa in the year 2000. 
KIBUN WA MŌ SENSŌ ( 気分はもう戦争)

●ILLUSTRATED ESSAY● MANJU KOWAI (饅頭こわ) #29


MANJU KOWAI (饅頭こわ) #29
Horie Taku 「yaguruma ken'nosuke」ugokushiro no sensha dai zukai
堀江卓「矢車剣之助」動く城の戦車大図解

Variety (バラエティ) #3
1982-I-21 | 2 pages | B&W


●MANGA● SPEED



SPEED

Just Comic (ジャストコミック)
1982-I-1 | 20 pages | Color & B/W

Collected in the book:
OTOMO KATSUHIRO ANTHOLOGY 2

The chapter cover illustration was reprinted in the page 18 of the artbook KABA



●ILLUSTRATION● SHIMPEI'S 30: 20-Sai e no okurimono (20歳への贈りもの)


Japanese brewery KIRIN has published a brochure that contains essays and illustrations by many Japanese authors and artist focusing on world renown people such as: Michelangelo Antonioni, Richard Avedon, The Beatles, Ingrid Bergman, Humphrey Bogart, Clifford Brown, Raymond Chandler, Jimmy Cliff, James Dean, Walt Disney, Kenichi Enomoto, Scott Fitzgerald, Robert Frank, Ernest hemmingway, Mitsuharu kaneko, Francisco kiko, Rosanjin Kitaoji, Jerry Lewis, Dougles McArthur, Glenn Miller, Kenji Miyazawa, Marilyn Monroe, Mikio Oda, Joe Pass, Django Reinhardt, Amalia Rodrigues, Babe Ruth Koroku Sato, Hyakken Uchida, and Johnny Weissmuller

Katsuhiro Otomo illustrated the Humphrey Bogart related article.


BOOK DETAILS

Publisher: Kirin Brewery Co., Ltd (キリンビール株式会社)
Release date: 1982
Language: Japanese


AVAILABILITY

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1k8JckV

●ILLUSTRATION● YOU opening



Katshuhiro Otomo has drawn the illustrations of the opening for the japanese NHK 's YOU program.

DETAILS:
Client: NHK Education TV「YOU」(NHK教育テレビ「YOU」)
Original Broadcast date: 1982
Song: Ryuichi Sakamoto (坂本龍一)
Pictures Katsuhiro Otomo (大友克洋)

The illustrations are contained in Katsuhiro Otomo's book KABA.

The Music from this opening was released in Ryuichi Sakamoto's CM/TV album: