Yours truly with celebrated Godzilla suit actor Kenpachiro Satsuma, in front of Toho Cinemas in Shibuya.
Today I had the distinct privlege of spending several hours with Kenpachiro Satsuma, the Godzilla suit actor of the series' Heisei era (1984-1995). Satsuma-san also portrayed Hedorah in Godzilla vs. the Smog Monster (1971) and Gigan in Godzilla vs. Gigan (1972) and Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973).
My friend Yasushi and I drank coffee with Satsuma-san in a cafe near Toho Cinemas in Shibuya. The discussion covered a lot of ground, including the making of Godzilla vs. Megalon and the North Korean monster romp Pulgasari (1985). Other topics were also broached. Contrary to what's been widely reported, Satsuma-san did not walk out on the screening of Godzilla (1998) at John Rocco Roberto's G-CON '98 in Chicago. Even though he did not enjoy the film, he stayed until the end.
After a few hours, it was time to go home, but not before the obligatory photos were taken! This evening was by far the most time I've spent in Satsuma-san's company. I've met him a few times at other gatherings, but this meeting was by far the most enjoyable. I look forward to visiting Satsuma-san again in the near future!