Staff Relay InterviewsNEW!
Voice Director, English Audio
With "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), we distribute the film all over the world via disc media and Internet streaming at the same time as in Japan. For these purposes, our Blu-ray disc includes subtitles in Japanese, English, French, Korean, traditional Chinese characters (for Taiwan and Hong Kong), and simplified Chinese characters, along with Japanese and English audio tracks. So that it can be enjoyed simultaneously throughout the world, we create English audio—the only language in which we dub besides Japanese—almost at the same time as we produce the film in Japan. Ms. Stephanie Sheh plays the role of voice director for the English-dubbed version. As a seasoned actor, she also plays many anime voices while she works as director, and is very knowledgeable about Japanese anime. We asked her to talk about the differences in the methods of post-recording between Japan and the United States, and her thoughts about the Gundam series via her experiences with "THE ORIGIN."
In live action and anime, the function of sound effects is to add more realism to everything from characters' movements to the environments they move in, and even fictional hardware and vehicles that appear in the story. Sound effects are essential to making the footage complete, though in a different form than dialogue and music. We spoke to Mr. Mutsuhiro Nishimura, who has handled sound effects for many anime works, about the process of creating sound effects and what the work is like, and what he particularly focused on for "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN").
In animation production, the person responsible for assembling what's animated in the studio and connecting the shots that have been filmed into a single piece of footage is the editor. In concrete terms, what is the editing process that makes the tempo of the drama and the movement of the characters more impressive? We spoke to Masato Yoshitake, chief editor on "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), about what specifically needed focus when editing "THE ORIGIN."
With the conclusion of the "Chronicle of Char and Sayla" and the start of the "Chronicle of the Loum Battlefield," Producer Osamu Taniguchi of Origin Studio returns to our relay interview series for the first time in three years. He spoke to us about the work of these three years to get to Episode 4, new guidelines for the production starting with Episode 5 which is being undertaken with fresh enthusiasm, the thinking behind the scenes, and his interactions with the staff.
We are entering our fourth year since we began running these relay interviews. This time, with all four episodes of the "Chronicle of Char and Sayla" now complete, we once again interview General Director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko to coincide with the start of the second part, the new "Chronicle of the Loum Battlefield." He spoke about his feelings on the completion of the "Chronicle of Char and Sayla," the first anime he has been involved with in many years, and his enthusiasm and thoughts about the newly beginning "Chronicle of the Loum Battlefield."
The comic "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN MSD: Cucuruz Doan's Island" (hereafter referred to as "MSD: Cucuruz Doan's Island") is currently being serialized in Monthly Gundam Ace magazine as an official side story of the anime "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"). The story revolves around the character Cucuruz Doan who appeared in one episode of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM," and depicts "THE ORIGIN's" history of mobile suit development, which was not shown in the original anime. We talked to the manga's author Junji Ohno about his behind-the-scenes experiences related to its creation, and how it came into being.
Art Director × Art Setting
Junichi Higashi × Yohei Kodama (Part 2)
Picking up where we left off in our previous installment, we speak with Art Director Junichi Higashi and Art Setting Designer Yohei Kodama of the background art production company Studio Easter, which handled the art in general on "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"). In this second part, we include Art Direction Assistant Takeru Odaka who ensured smooth collaboration with Origin Studio. We spoke about what needed particular attention or hard work in terms of art specifically because this was "THE ORIGIN," and their discussions with General Director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko.
Art Director × Art Setting
Junichi Higashi × Yohei Kodama (Part 1)
In anime, the task of broadening the worldview and instilling the locations with a sense of presence and conviction is entrusted to "background art." In "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), the background art had to be perfect in order to create a new depiction of the Universal Century worldview. This time around, we spoke in two parts with Art Director Junichi Higashi and Art Setting Designer Yohei Kodama of the background art production company Studio Easter, which handled the overall art on "THE ORIGIN".
Kycilia Zabi actress
In "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as THE ORIGIN), Kycilia Zabi is an Amazon of the Zabi family, with an overwhelming presence. We spoke to Kycilia actress Ms. Akeno Watanabe about the impressive Kycilia as she conducts covert operations in "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN IV Eve of Destiny" before the outbreak of the Zeon war for independence, and she told us about the appeal of the character and the key points in portraying her.
Theme Song Singer
Ms. Hiroko Moriguchi has sung the theme songs for many Gundam works, including "MOBILE SUIT Z GUNDAM," "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM F91," and "SD GUNDAM G GENERATION," and she was responsible for "Sora no Kanata de" for "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN IV Eve of Destiny." Since "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM F91," she has been singing the theme songs for Gundam theatrical releases for the past 25 years, and she has been associated with Gundam works since her debut song. She told us all about her theme songs for the Gundam series, which she is deeply attached to, and her other anime songs, as well as what she focused on for this new song.
Lalah Sune Voice Actress
As one who guides Char, and as a symbol of Newtypes, Lalah Sune is a character who leaves a strong, lasting impression. The first meeting between Char and Lalah is depicted in "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN IV Eve of Destiny." How did Ms. Saori Hayami perform the role of Lalah, this mysterious girl who bonds with Char in "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN")? We asked her about her approach to her performance, and her back-and-forth with Char Aznable actor Mr. Shuichi Ikeda.
Bandai Hobby Division
Hirofumi Kishiyama × Mizuki Fukuda
Gundam plastic model kits, or "Gunpla," have great importance when it comes to Gundam-related merchandise. For "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), the Gunpla are developed as important items in tandem with the series. In this interview we speak to Hirofumi Kishiyama and Mizuki Fukuda, who are in charge of developing the plastic models for "THE ORIGIN" at the Bandai Hobby Division, about developing the models in conjunction with the CG that's used in the animation.
CG Producer & Director × CG Producer
Kiichirou Inoue × Taisuke Iwakiri (Part 2)
In this second half of our conversation with the CG producers on "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), we talk in detail about the 3DCG used in the series. We spoke at extended length about how CG was specifically used in "THE ORIGIN," what they focused on in modeling and animation of the mobile suits, and points to look for in the CG use from their perspective as the CG producers.
CG Producer & Director × CG Producer
Kiichirou Inoue × Taisuke Iwakiri (Part 1)
In "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), depictions of mecha and special effects scenes using 3DCG and digital image processing play a major role. Nowadays, 3DCG and digital image processing have become indispensable in the production of animation, so how were they employed in “THE ORIGIN”? We speak to CG Producers Kiichirou Inoue and Taisuke Iwakiri of Sunrise’s D.I.D. Studio, which was responsible for CG production, about the CG in “THE ORIGIN.”
Theme Song Singer
The singer of the theme song for "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN III Dawn of Rebellion" is singer and actress Ko Shibasaki. The song "Eien no Astraea" ("Eternal Astraea") is about memories of Char's and Sayla's departed mother Astraia, and Miss Shibasaki also wrote the lyrics herself. Miss Shibasaki had no experience with Gundam works before this, so we spoke to her about how she approached "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN") to write the song.
Lino Fernandez Voice Actor
In the production of the "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), a crucial character is the newly created Lino Fernandez, who closes in on the true identity of Casval, who has become Char. This sole original character is portrayed by Mr. Tomoaki Maeno. Lino has doubts about his transformed friend, and he feels both delight and dread at discovering his true identity, as well as faith in his charisma. As the thrilling events unfold, his feelings change into alignment with Char. We spoke to Mr. Maeno about creating his performance as Lino, and how he captured and expressed the character.
Garma Zabi Voice Actor
In "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), Char swears revenge on the Zabi family, and Garma Zabi, the fourth son of the Zabi family, is a crucial part of that. His role is played by Mr. Tetsuya Kakihara. He is referred to as a "spoiled kid," but Garma still strives to do his best as the heir to a distinguished family, and we talked to Mr. Kakihara with a focus on the thought process of creating his performance as Garma.
Military Uniform and Equipment Designer
For the production of “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN” (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), the design and setting of soldiers’ equipment, and Earth Federation Forces and Principality of Zeon rank insignia, were even further refined. The person who handled these designs was Takuhito Kusanagi, a designer who is well versed in military uniforms and equipment. We spoke to him about the process of coming up with intricate military designs the likes of which have not been featured in Gundam works before.
Director of Photography × Assistant Director of Photography
Takeshi Katsurayama × Ryo Iijima (Part 2)
This is the second part of our interview with Director of Photography Takeshi Katsurayama and Assistant Director of Photography Ryo Iijima of “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN” (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"). This time around, we discuss the points that needed particular attention and hard work due to the CG and high-quality artwork used for "THE ORIGIN", and the actual process of putting together the footage before and after.
Director of Photography × Assistant Director of Photography
Takeshi Katsurayama × Ryo Iijima (Part 1)
In the process of producing animation, the "photography" could be said to provide the finishing touches to the visuals. The position of creating effects and moods and visual atmosphere, and directing that process, is that of the director of photography. Mr. Takeshi Katsurayama has been director of photography not just on "THE ORIGIN" but also on many previous Gundam works. Working with him was assistant director of photography Mr. Ryo Iijima. We spoke to them about the job of "photography" in this two-part interview. In the first part, we talked about the basics of photography in anime production.
Artesia Som Deikun / Sayla Mass actress
Ms. Megumi Han, who plays the role of Casval's younger sister Artesia, is the daughter of Keiko Han, who played Lalah Sune in "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM." Through a remarkable twist of fate, mother and daughter have both become deeply involved in the Gundam series. We spoke to her about her thoughts on becoming involved with Gundam after being in contact with it since her youth, and on the role of Sayla.
Featured Song Performer
One of the high points of the series is the scene of Crowley Hamon singing at Club Eden. She directs the song, which seems to be filled with her own feelings, toward Ramba Ral, who is at one end of the club. The most critical role in this scene is played by Ms. Kaori Sawada, who wrote and sang the featured song "By Your Side." Ms. Sawada, who made her debut as a singer-songwriter after studying music in the United States, talked to us about how she faced the challenge of producing a featured song for an anime for the first time.
“Kaze Yo 0074” (“Dear Wind 0074”) has been announced as the theme song for “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN II Artesia’s Sorrow.” The person responsible for this song, which depicts Char’s inner heart, is solo singer Takumi Ishida. He is also a Gundam fan who experienced the first Gundam boom in real time, and we spoke to him about his thoughts on the theme song for this episode.
From character performances to background movement, the episode director is responsible for the visual depiction of all the details throughout an episode. This time around, we spoke to Nana Harada, the director of Episode 2 of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), mainly about the portrayal of Edouard and Sayla, and also about directorial attention to detail.
A music producer has the important role of making musicians create compositions that match the world of the story. In "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN") the job of music producer was given to Junji Fujita, who served as music director on the "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM" TV series (hereafter referred to as "GUNDAM") 35 years ago, as well as the three-part theatrical version. We talked to him about his thoughts on being involved as a music producer on both works 35 years apart, and the situation both then and now.
Chief Mechanical Animation Director
Any mechanically related animation in a production is supervised by the chief mechanical animation director. What is a mecha animation director’s job like, when it comes to depicting the mecha in an anime-like way even when hand-drawn art has been replaced by CG? In our latest relay interview, we talked to mecha animation director Takuya Suzuki, who was responsible for depicting the mecha in this story. We asked him about his focus when depicting the mecha in “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN” (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN").
In fictional worlds, there exist various technologies which are key to the story and world view. These technologies are imaginary, but if they are invested with consideration of actual ones, it definitely adds reality to the world of the story. On "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), SF (Science Fiction) consultant Mr. Tsukasa Shikano was the one who brought realism to the SF elements. We spoke to him about the SF-focused aspects of this project.
Coloring is an aspect of animation that usually goes unnoticed, but actually plays a crucial role in expressing the "taste" of a work. How was the color scheme for "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN") settled on? We spoke to color designer Ms. Nagisa Abe about the use of color in "THE ORIGIN."
Char Aznable Actor
In this installment of our relay interviews, we speak with Mr. Shuichi Ikeda, who has performed the role of Char Aznable ever since the TV version of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM" (hereafter referred to as First Gundam). How does he feel about the work called "THE ORIGIN"? And what are his thoughts on returning to the role of Char in a new film production after a long absence? He talked to us about his 36-year history with Char.
Theme Song Singer
Released under the name "Takayuki Hattori Presents GUNDAM THE ORIGIN featuring yu-yu," the main theme song of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN I Blue-Eyed Casval" is "Hoshikuzu no Sunadokei" ("Hourglass of Stardust"). Miss yu-yu is currently on a break from music, but in response to the ardent wishes of THE ORIGIN's staff, Miss yu-yu specially participated. She talked to us about how she came to sing the main theme song, and her other thoughts.
This time in our relay interview series, at long last we have Mr. Yoshikazu Yasuhiko, author of the "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" manga, and general director of the OVA. He spoke to us at length about many things, including his thoughts and feelings as episode 1 finally neared completion, what he focused on as general director, and his thoughts about the cast and crew. So here we go with an even more packed interview than usual!
In this installment of our series of relay interviews, we have Mr. Mika Akitaka, who has taken on a wide range of designs for everything from warships to mobile suits in many Gundam works, such as "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM ZZ" and "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM 0083 STARDUST MEMORY." On this project, he was responsible mainly for designing the warships of both the Earth Federation Forces and the Principality of Zeon Forces, which fight fiercely in the Battle of Loum depicted in the opening. We talked to him about the toughest aspects of the designs, and highlights to watch out for.
In this installment of our relay interview series, we welcome mechanical designer Mr. Kimitoshi Yamane, who expanded the world view of the Universal Century by adding a touch of military realism to its mechanical designs in such series as "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM: THE 08th MS TEAM" and "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM MS IGLOO." We spoke with him about what he focused on in the mecha designs that appear in "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN").
In the seventh in our series of relay interviews with the staff of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), we have Sound Director Sadayoshi Fujino. He is a veteran sound director who has been involved with numerous Gundam works, starting with "MOBILE SUIT Z GUNDAM." We talked to him about how he got a handle on this story about the Universal Century's past, and what it was like in the studio during the post-recording of episode 1.
For this sixth in our series of relay staff interviews, we spoke to music director Mr. Takayuki Hattori. Mr. Hattori has provided the music for many TV dramas such as "HERO," "THE KING'S RESTAURANT," "NAOKI HANZAWA," and NHK's historical drama series "SHINSENGUMI!" among others. We talked to him about what was in his mind when constructing the musical world of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN," and what he focuses on in musical production.
The fifth in our series of relay interviews with the staff of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" is Episode Director Kiyoshi Egami. He debuted as an episode director on "BLUE COMET SPT LAYZNER" (1985), and has been involved with many works since. This veteran episode director talked to us about what kind of character performances we will see in "THE ORIGIN."
Character Design, Chief Animation Director
Taking center stage for the fourth in our series of relay interviews is Chief Animation Director Hiroyuki Nishimura. Mr. Nishimura has been involved in numerous projects and has earned a high reputation as an animation director. We talked to him about how he felt about being a part of "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN") and the expressiveness of General Director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko's art.
For this installment in our series of relay staff interviews, we have Mr. Tsukasa Kotobuki, the lead character designer. Mr. Kotobuki has been active in a broad range of projects, from character design for anime and games, to creating Gundam manga such as "MOBILE SUIT Z GUNDAM Day After Tomorrow - From Kai's Shiden's Reports" (hereafter referred to as "Kai's Reports"). We talked to him about his thoughts on "MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN" (hereafter referred to as "THE ORIGIN"), which Mr. Yoshikazu Yasuhiko himself asked him to work on.
For this second installment in our series of relay interviews with the creative team behind “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN” (hereafter referred to as “THE ORIGIN”) we have screenplay writer Mr. Katsuyuki Sumisawa. He has worked on many scripts, beginning with ”MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM WING” and he talked about the key points in the construction of “THE ORIGIN” story and his work with general director Mr. Yoshikazu Yasuhiko.
Here begins our series of relay interviews with the staff of “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN”!
For our first installment we have Mr. Osamu Taniguchi, on-site producer at Sunrise’s Origin Studio. He talked to us about what kind of work they are creating with the anime version of “MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN,” focusing on the 90-second trailer video for the first episode “Blue-Eyed Casval,” which was released a few days before this interview.