Sunday, April 3, 2016

TEN YEARS OF GAMERA THE BRAVE! Special Guests Help Celebrate a Decade of Destruction!

Special effects staff member Kazuaki Sekiyama and creature creator Tomo Haraguchi pose with an actual suit head from Gamera the Brave (2006). Photo by Brett Homenick

Today I went to Yokohama to watch a screening of a 35mm print of Gamera the Brave (2006). I'd seen the film once before circa 2007, and at the time I didn't think much of it. This time my opinion improved, and I enjoyed it much more than before.

In attendance were SFX staff member Kazuaki Sekiyama and creature creator Tomo Haraguchi (a.k.a. Tomo-o Haraguchi). Haraguchi-san brought the actual suit head of the Gamera suit used early in the film when the Friend of All Children is battling several Gyaos.

With explosions expert Kazuaki Sekiyama. (Somehow our arms got all tangled up!) 

I enjoyed speaking with Sekiyama-san and getting to know more about his career. He started as a (very) young man working as a staff member on Ultraman Ace (1972-73) and ended up working on many Toho tokusatsu productions, starting with Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973). His specialty is explosions, so he fit right in with Teruyoshi Nakano's crew! Sekiyama-san continues to work in film to this day, and his work was featured in Gamera the Brave.

With Tomo Haraguchi and what's left of Gamera after fighting a bunch of Gyaos!

While I've met Haraguchi-san before, this was my first chance to spend a great deal of time with him. Haraguchi-san is also a director in his own right, having helmed such titles as Mikadroid (1991), Sakuya: Slayer of Demons (2000), and Death Kappa (2010). He was very friendly as well, and the conversation went on so long that it continued on the train!

Thanks to everyone for a great evening!

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