lunes, marzo 30

Staff de "East of Eden" revelado.

La fuente ha sido la misma Production IG en su página oficial. Ahora ponemos una breve, pero intensa lista de nombres que sin duda, ya empieza a abrirnos boca para la serie de 2009.

Original Story, Screenplay, Director:
Kenji Kamiyama

Original Character Design:
Chika Umino

Kenji Kawai

Character Design:
Satoko Morikawa

Assistant Director:
Masayuki Yoshihara

Chief Animation Superviser:
Satoru Nakamura

Art Director:
Yusuke Takeda

Color Designer:
Yumiko Katayama

CGI Director:
Makoto Endo

Director of Photography:
Koji Tanaka

Animation Production:
Production I.G

miércoles, marzo 25

Behind the Scenes Part 2: Shotaro Suga (Scriptwriter)

The second in the series is featuring Shotaro Suga, already known as one of the main scriptwriters for the S.A.C. series. Suga wrote scripts for Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Solid State Society (S.S.S.) along with the director Kenji Kamiyama and Yoshiki Sakurai. "For S.S.S., we had put more emphasis on drama," he told us, looking back at the production. We asked him to tell us some behind-the-scenes stories while he was working on the script.

Part 2: Shotaro Suga (Scriptwriter)
"I always think of Kamiyama-san when I hear the title S.A.C. It started with Kamiyama-san and ends with Kamiyama-san."

Born in Tokyo on December 31, 1972. Scriptwriter. For Production I.G, he wrote in the S.A.C. series, Blood+ and Le Chevalier D'Eon. He also worked extensively for TV drama productions and feature films, including Kazuaki Kiriya's Casshern. He is an acclaimed scriptwriters for both live action films and anime.

"When I was first contacted about S.S.S., I thought, are those guys really going to do that again?"

"Don't take me wrong. I was delighted, but I also knew how tough it was going to be. At the same time, it was a project I couldn't pass up, so I was 50% thrilled with joy and 50% anxious."

Suga is quite frank about telling this. He has a look of someone content with a job well done and also proud of S.S.S., which emerged as an intricate and multifaceted anime.

"S.S.S. starts where S.A.C. 2nd Gig ended. From the very beginning we never took in consideration the option of making a side episode that could be set somewhere in the timeline between the first and the second season. We did not want to elude the fact that Motoko was no longer part of Section 9."

Instead of looking for easy compromises, the staff bravely picked up the on-going story of the S.A.C. series and built up an entirely new chapter from the continuity of that context. According to Suga, creating Kusanagi's character was the most challenging part of the scriptwriting.

"This might be misleading to some extent, but men are easy to understand. For instance, take Batou. For him, Section 9 only exists with Motoko. But is he so very innocent and simple as to run up to support Motoko? Sadly, he is. (lol) On the other hand, he quite understands his role in the present Section 9 and knows what he has to do. He sort of sways between the two values."

"Togusa leans more towards his responsibility than his own ideal. This is partly because of Aramaki's command. Togusa was in the past series portrayed as a rather excitable novice with a strong sense of justice. Instead, Togusa is now closer to Aramaki's position: crimes have not diminished, so they can't concentrate on searching for Major Kusanagi. In this sense, Togusa is more determined than Batou."

"But Motoko is different. This might sound cheesy, but she stepped out of Section 9 to search for herself. The meeting with Kuze had a decisive influence upon her. What Kuze intended to do was not totally dismissible to her and she had personal feelings for him too. As she became doubtful of what she was doing and lost her clear sense of purpose, she left Section 9. Does Motoko have a reason for coming into contact again with the members of Section 9? How do we pick up the psychological state of Motoko Kusanagi at the end of 2nd Gig and make her do a safe landing here? This was the most difficult part."

Amazingly, the director Kamiyama pointed out that one of the main themes for S.S.S. was the 'rebirth of Motoko Kusanagi.' That was to bring Kusanagi at the end of 2nd Gig back to the Kusanagi seen at the beginning of Shirow Masamune's original comic book. Coincidentally, Suga had the most grueling time with such 'rebirth.'

"If Motoko's values and ideals had drastically changed and left Section 9, she would have acted differently. Sort of like 'I am going this way and you will do whatever you want to do.' In fact, she is stronger than any of the members in that sense. But this movie has shown Motoko getting back to her original self again rather than showing that kind of strength. She is looking for a clue that would show her the path she has to take in the future."

We asked Suga what it was like to be working on the S.A.C. universe over the period of five years.

"For us, it's like playing tennis against a wall. Basically, the incidents that we put in the story are transmitted out of Kamiyama-san. He gives us topics. We start discussions on his basic ideas. Then we would just chat and chat, talk a lot of gibberish and at the end go back to the start. This is how the Kamiyama team works. As Blood+ was none other than the director Fujisaku, S.A.C. is all Kamiyama. I can't find other ways to express this."

(from 2nd Gig Episode 26: Endless Gig)

Where is Kusanagi going after leaving Section 9 in 2nd Gig? This is the must-see part of S.S.S.

"I think S.S.S. will be interesting for those who have watched the entire series behind this movie. I have talked with the director Kamiyama about how we could make it appealing for those who haven't. In the Kamiyama team, we talk about a sense of "contiguousness" that connects the present world with the S.A.C. world. We hope you will look at the issues that are portrayed in the series with that in mind. Of course you don't necessary have to be too serious, but these are not just somebody else's problems. It's an SF story, but we are raising points to consider in modern society. I think you will enjoy it more if you pay attention to these things."

Behind the Scenes Part 1: Tomohisa Nishimura (Producer)

Tomohisa Nishimura (Producer)
"The best phrase to describe how I feel is We've done it."

After participating in Sakura Wars: the Movie, he staffed the production department for Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and S.A.C. 2nd Gig, and then became the line producer for the new Solid State Society. Nishimura says: "We have to keep the place clean to make it a pleasant workplace."

"Although Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex was a TV series, we didn't take a common layout approach. We decided to get "strikes" pitching fastballs, no "four balls." Nowadays anime productions tend to adopt a take-it-easy way when it comes to creating pictures, but with the S.A.C. series, we took it on with fastballs."

Thus the producer Nishimura looks back on the S.A.C. TV series. He truly respects the director Kamiyama who sincerely takes each project somewhat too seriously. They are good partners. How did Nishimura think about the finished S.S.S.?

"We used a system called the 3-D Layout System throughout the series. This helped to upgrade the quality as well as to speed up the process.
This 3-D Layout allows us to set out the inside scenes of buildings in a 3-D format ahead of time. To make it short, the 3-D team and the sequence director would decide the overall framework of the layout, so we would have the entire layout before we discuss each frame animation. This process has improved the overall movie quality. Of course, frame animators might add a final touch as well. It was also very helpful to have Takayuki Goto as the chief animation supervisor. Goto-san has checked the entire movie, so I think there is more continuity in the animation style."

In the animation production process, each scene is the result of a teamwork that involve a high number of people, from the sequence director to the key animators and in-betweeners. It is important to have people working on the same scene understand each other to make a quality output. In the production of S.S.S., "lighting boards" were also introduced for this purpose.

"We asked our art team to draw what we call "lighting boards" upfront, so we were able to put more detail and input into each scene. Of course, it is not uncommon to have such a reference tool in feature film productions, but I think it turned very useful for the animation supervisor during the drawing of key frames."

"In the production of S.S.S., we had a lighting board that showed where the light sources were for each of the key scenes. Layout for the scene and the location of the light source are not particularly obvious factors when you are watching anime, but these things accumulate to keep a certain level of quality for each scene."

Nishimura also confides that "the balance of keeping up the schedule and the quality was difficult. I still feel I could have worked more on smoothing out the work flow from one section to the next."

"The staff worked very hard and I feel the outcome is superb, but there is a lot that we came out with, which I'd like to work into the next project."
From his words we sensed a professional always aiming to accomplish the best under the leadership of the director Kamiyama.

Above you can see an example of a 3-D layout. In the opening scenes of S.S.S., Togusa and the new Section 9 go after Colonel Ka Geru, who had locked himself inside the airport building. Togusa is aiming his gun beside the right pillar and Azuma is in the left hand side. The layout like this was provided as a reference at the meeting to discuss the key frames. For S.S.S., almost all of the indoor scenes were constructed using the 3-D layout system.

These are the lighting boards and the actual animation for the same scenes (above). The boards show the locations of light sources clearly, so the sequence director and animation supervisor found them very helpful. The boards were drawn by Yusuke Takeda, the art director for S.S.S.

Quick briefing on Studio 9
As of November 2006, Production I.G has ten studios numbered 1 to 10, the Niigata Studio, the G-Studio (game development), Atelier Ogura (specializing in backgrounds) and IGFX (focusing on 3-D animation). Studio 9 was actually established for the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex series.

In the beginning, they worked in a room within the ING Building (the original location of Studio 3), but as the size of their project expanded, the room became too small, so they moved out of the building and set up a new studio at a separate location. Interestingly enough, Production I.G had only seven studios at the time when Studio 9 was founded, but the "Section 9" element was so strong that became a decisive factor in the naming of the new structure.

What's special about Studio 9 is that it has the capability of carrying out the entire process of anime production on the same floor: production scheduling, script writing, creating animation, directing, coloring, 3-D works, and filming. Obviously, a TV anime series can't be completed at Studio 9 alone, but in the world of anime production where specialization has become a major trend, Studio 9, which encompasses the entire process of production, is a rare breed.

The producer Nishimura talked about its merits. "When you have people from different sections crammed together, you get responses quickly, so I think it's less complicated to work. For instance, the 3-D team can connect with the sequence directors and the photographers and ask questions casually. That's the advantage of Studio 9."

The studio is always under some sort of pressure. According to Nissan's product designer Shunsuke Iijima, who visited the studio a few times while production of S.S.S. was in progress, "they work under the same kind of pressure as us (automobile) designers. They have cool flames burning inside the studio. It's the silent tension. I thought creators were the same everywhere."

Studio 9 inside view. Regularly, there are about thirty staff members. This is undoubtedly the territory of the director Kamiyama.

viernes, marzo 20

East of Eden - Trailer -

Se ha lanzado un microsite especial de otra de las producciones de anime que más atención a despertado entre el público, Eden of the East. No obstante esta producción cuenta con un elenco de personalidades en su staff imposible de ignorar, con Kenji Kamiyama (Ghost In The Shell SAC, Moribito) como creador, escritor y director a las ordenes de todo.

En la web oficial ya se puede ver el primer tráiler oficial de este proyecto que cuenta además con los característicos diseños de Chica Umino (Honey & Clover), que le dan un toque muy distinto a lo que nos tiene acostumbrados Production I.G. y Kenji Kamiyama.

Diez misiles alcanzan al país nipón. Sin embargo este acto terrorista, que será conocido como “El descuidado Lunes”, no causa en apariencia ninguna víctima mortal y es olvidado en poco tiempo. Tres meses más tarde Saki Morimi, una joven japonesa que se encuentra en EEUU será salvada del problema en el que se verá metida por Akira Takizawa, un compatriota completamente desnudo que perdió la memoria y tan sólo posee una pistola y un móvil con un saldo de yenes. ¿Quién es Akira Takizawa, qué secretos esconde su extraordinario teléfono móvil y qué fue lo que le hizo perder la memoria?

El resto del staff confirmado son Satoko Morikawa (The Cat Returns, Nanatsu no Umi no Tico, Princess Arete) que se encargará de adaptar los diseños de Chica Umino, el reconocido Kenji Kawai (Ghost in the Shell, Moribito) como compositor de la banda sonora, y Yusuke Takeda (Blood: The Last Vampire, Moribito) como director artístico.

Otros nombres importantes que se han añadido recientemente al proyecto son la conocida banda inglesa Oasis, que aportarán con su tema "Falling Down" el opening a la serie.

La película de animación está previsto que se estrene una vez la serie haya sido estrenada en televisión en abril.

Fuente: Anime News Network

miércoles, marzo 18

Shirow & Lucent Pictures Entertainment

Masamune Shirow ha vuelto a aparecer, esta vez, para sorprendernos con una nueva película en el que participará junto a el estudio Lucent Pictures Entertainment. Squad será un historia similar a las que nos tiene acostumbrados Shirow, situada, como no, en el futuro. Y por el momento con un sólo un subtitulo que dice "Una batalla por la misión al frente - Yo te cubriré las espaldas". Añadir que tan sólo se ha mostrado una imagen de la película, en la que se puede observar como se asemeja al tipo de animación ya vista en Appleseed.

Lucent Pictures comparte este año en la feria stand con el Studio 4°C. Ambos anunciaron el pasado martes una alianza estratégica que llevaría el nombre de Lucent 4°C, con el fin de centrarse en una nueva generación que comparte animación y 3D. En la producción también participan Beagle y Cross Road, además, la web de Squad ya ha sido abierta.

Fuente: Anime Nation & Ramen para dos.

sábado, marzo 14

Cómo se hizo Ghost in the Shell

A continuación podremos ver el makin of de la película de Oshii.
Este vídeo se encuentra en los extras de las últimas versiones de GitS que han salido a la venta.

viernes, marzo 13

Ghost in the Shell 2.0 OST

Fecha de Lanzamiento: Diciembre 17, 2008.

Música compuesta por Kenji Kawaii.

01. Utai I - Making of Cyborg

02. Ghosthack

03. Puppetmaster

04. Virtual Crime

05. Utai II - Ghost City

06. Access

07. Nightstalker

08. Floating Museum

09. Ghostdive

10. Utai III - Reincarnation

11. Mai Ten Miru Ikken!

12. Osamu Kara Kidou Tai Yokoku BGM.