News special edition: What, another one?!

Yesterday, Gen Urobuchi,  possibly the hottest Japanese screenwriter working today, famous for hits like Madoka Magica, Kamen Rider Gaim, Psycho Pass, Gargantia on the Verderous PlanetThunderbolt Fantasy, and more (*cough* Blassreiter)teased his twitter followers about the upcoming reveal of a project 16 months in the making… what could be so “unbelievable and shocking”?

Well, if for some reason you haven’t seen it elsewhere, you might have figured out from the context clue that it got us to post on a Thursday: another new Godzilla movie!

godzilla 2017

I do hope it’s not simply titled “Godzilla“, since we already have four of those, but yeah, it looks like that Godzilla anime thing is moving right along, though also not exactly what I was expecting. The 2017 film will be produced by Polygon Pictures, best known for 3D CG renderings, ranging from anime like Ronia the Robber’s Daughter, Ajin, and Knights of Sidonia to western cartoons like Transformers Prime, Tron Uprising, and Star Wars: Clone Wars. Directing the film is Knights of Sidonia‘s Kobun Shizuno (though the website advertises using the much more popular Detective Conan movies, and he’s also credited as “co-director” on Evangelion 1.11: You Are (Not) Alone), with Hiroyuki Seshita of Ajin, Blame!, and (of course) Knights of Sidonia directing CG. Long story short, it’s reasonable to expect a movie that looks sort of like this:

For me, this is a mixed bag: Urobuchi has certainly delivered a string of hits, but as an out-of-touch geezer I can find it difficult to resonate with the CG aesthetics of Sidonia. Still, more Godzilla movies has never not been a wonderful thing, and nobody was expected another Japanese feature to sandwich in between Legendary productions. It’s also going to be unlike any previous incarnation of Godzilla in animation, assuming he doesn’t teach children hiragana or fight Shin-chan or sing in Pikachu’s voice or whatnot. (Hm… considering that Godzilland used Dragonball Z‘s “Head Cha La” and Godzilla Kingdom used Gundam Wing‘s “Rhythm Generation”, I wonder if the OP for this movie will come from a popular anime too?)

As long as we’ve interrupted to talk Godzilla news, Kazuhiko Shimamoto had a “Anno vs. Honoo” doujinshi at Comiket, delightfully taking inspiration from the superb TV drama version of Shimamoto’s manga Aoi Honoo (AKA “Blue Blazes”). The doujinshi sold out immediately, but thankfully Shimamoto did eventually decide to sell a few via his website later.

anno vs honoo

Shimamoto (with Anno’s help) put on a screening of Shin Godzilla where the audience was allowed to cosplay, shout, wave glowsticks, and generally behave like the mob at any American convention. Anno himself showed up, and, as viewers of Blue Blazes know, interactions between him and Shimamoto are generally hilarious. Amanda did a great writeup on the event for ANN, so I’d encourage people to check it out.

anno shimamoto theater

Also, SciFi Japan has a preview for Godzilla: Rage Across Time. I’ll leave things here for now, as tempting as it is to get into the new Ultraman movie dubs and whatnot, and we’ll have our regularly scheduled news recap sometime this weekend. But yeah, heads-up: new Godzilla flick, animated, woot.

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