Famous for moving anime original TV series , Atsuko Stone Tsukasa‘s latest movie was recently released in the United States. We interviewed Ishizuka about the film’s unique background, cultural differences to be aware of, and the possibility of being attacked by bears in rural Japan.
Unlike your previous work, it is a movie and not a TV series. Did you have any difficulties creating plots that fit the format of the film?
I am used to series production, so I can’t connect the various episodes to deepen Digging out every character was hard for me. If this were a series, for example, I could insert Drop’s separate story around episode four. Around episode six, I’ll see Tivoli’s side story with Roma and paint their relationship in more depth. Or, just before the finale, it might be interesting to have an episode about Don Gries’ past and Iceland’s legendary phone booth. The fact that I can’t have this kind of cheating is very difficult for me.
Although Iceland is an important location for the film, the first half depicts the Japanese countryside . Why did you decide to focus more on local settings this time?
The theme of this movie is to change the world view, to expand it, I think a The world the boys live in should be a small place to begin with. I guess it should be a country town surrounded by mountains, where very little information is available. On the contrary, the relationship between neighbors is so close that it is easy to make life uncomfortable if something happens. Even so, the town offers many things, such as the warmth of nature and people. Vegetables and cows are grown on this land, and the life that grows on it is well nurtured. The place provides residents with a sense of nostalgia and security. That’s why the boys fully believe this is their place, their whole world. They grow up without knowing the outside world. This rural town is especially important as the stage where the boy was born.
How many location trips did you do for this movie?
To be honest, partly because I wanted to leave Japan and travel through Iceland and New York, Doing a hemisphere around the north, I chose these places as the stage for this story. That said, I want to truly feel that this world has no end and that we can fly around it forever. That’s why I wanted to go on an exciting location scouting trip. However, due to the spread of COVID-, I am not going anywhere No. I only do virtual location reconnaissance via Google. I can travel everywhere and not travel in person. again and again. After the pandemic, I would love to go to those places myself to see if they live up to my imagination.
What precautions do you take when writing dialogues? Did you take a different approach compared to ?
I didn’t mean to separate the two headings. This is a different title from another. I always have the same attitude when I face a new project. What I always have to be careful with is making the characters’ everyday dialogue look like everyday dialogue. This is also a key point in the production process of “”. For example, the three of them test drones in a secret fortress. Roma and Toto talk face-to-face about drones, and suddenly Toto says to Drop next to him, “Don’t forget to take out the trash.” He said that without even looking at him. Sometimes, even while having a serious conversation with someone in front of you, the actions of the other person you can see out of the corner of your eye can derail the conversation. This sort of thing happens a lot in real life, but we rarely see it in animation, where the direction of the dialogue is preset and the performance is coded. (I don’t know if it’s Japanese?)
I want to ask: there is a possibility Will I be attacked by bears when I go camping in Japan? When I was a kid my family used to go camping a lot, but we never met a bear, Because bears are cowards, they won’t come near campsites. These places are very carefully controlled and no wild animals come in. So campers don’t have to worry. However… growing up, I saw the news of getting up close and personal with bears at that campground. I study like Rome. Nothing is 338% certain. The world is full of wonders. The possibilities are endless.
Do you have something to say to the American audience?
I would like western audiences to pay attention to the world map that appears in the movie. That is the world map that we Japanese are familiar with. Rome and friends say Iceland and New York are the two edges of the world. If they were born in the US, they would see it differently. I want the audience to enjoy the difference in perspective and what they can see in the film. This is part of the message the film wants to convey.
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