Tokusatsu


Tokusatsu

. Toho, the creators of Godzilla, also had their hands in creating the Chouseishin Series of programs from 2003 to 2006.

Tokusatsu movies

There are also various movies that are classified as "tokusatsu" but are generalized science fiction films. These include nihongo|"Warning from Space"|宇宙人東京に現わる|Uchūjin Tokyo ni arawaru|Spacemen Appear in Tokyo, nihongo|"Invasion of the Neptune Men"|宇宙快速船|Uchū Kaisokusen|Space Hypership, nihongo|"The Green Slime"|ガンマー第3号 宇宙大作戦|Ganmā daisan gō: uchū daisakusen, nihongo|"The Birth of Japan"|日本誕生|Nippon Tanjō, nihongo|"The Last War"|世界大戦争|Sekai daisenso, nihongo|"Japan Sinks"|日本沈没|Nihon Chinbotsu, nihongo|"Virus"|復活の日|Fukkatsu no hi, nihongo|"Sayonara Jupiter"|さよならジュピター|Sayonara Jupitā, nihongo|"The War in Space"|惑星大戦争|Wakusei daisenso, and nihongo|"Sengoku Jieitai 1549"|戦国自衛隊1549.

Original Video Productions

* Ginga-roid Cosmo X (銀河ロイドコスモX)
* Evolver (イヴォルバー -EVOLVER-)
* Gynoids: SAD Story ()
* Moeyo! Dragon Girls (萌えよ!ドラゴンガールズ)
*

imilar productions

Non-traditional tokusatsu productions

Non-traditional tokusatsu films and television programs may not use the conventional special effects or may not star human actors. Suitmation is characteristic of tokusatsu; however, some productions may use stop-motion instead to animate its monsters (e.g. "Majin Hunter Mitsurugi" (1973)). "Puppet shows" may use traditional tokusatsu techniques, but are cast with puppets or marionettes (e.g. "Uchuusen Silica" (1960), "Ginga Shonen Tai" (1963) and "Kuchuu Toshi 008" (1969); Go Nagai's "X Bomber" (1980)). Some tokusatsu may employ animation in addition to its live-action components (e.g. Tsuburaya Productions' "Dinosaur Expedition Team Bornfree" (1976), "Dinosaur War Aizenborg" (1977) and "Pro-Wrestling Star Aztekaiser" (1976)).

Japanese fan films

As popular culture fandom in Japan grew in the 1980s, a fan-based group called Daicon Film (now called Gainax) was created by Hideaki Anno, Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, Takami Akai, and Shinji Higuchi. Besides anime sequences, they also produced a series of tokusatsu shorts parodying monster movies and superhero shows which has gained much media coverage. These productions include "Patriotic Squadron Dai-Nippon" (1983), "Swift Hero Noutenki" (1982), "Return of Ultraman" (1983) and "The Eight-Headed Giant Serpent Strikes Back" (1985).

In the turn of the new millennium, comedian Shinpei Hayashiya produced a number of tokusatsu fan films. These include "Godzilla Vs. Seadora" and "" (2004). In 2005, he completed his upcoming first original effort, "Deep Sea Beast Reigo".

Tokusatsu-influenced productions outside Japan

Tokusatsu technique has been replicated outside of Japan due to the popularity of Godzilla films. In 1961, England made its own Godzilla-style film, "Gorgo", which used the same suitmation technique as the Godzilla films. That same year, Saga Studios in Denmark made another Godzilla-style giant monster film, "Reptilicus". This film's monster was brought to life using a marionette on a miniature set. In 1967, South Korea produced its own kaiju movie titled "Taekoesu Yonggary". In 1975, Shaw Brothers produced a superhero film called "The Super Inframan", based on the huge success of Ultraman and Kamen Rider there. The film starred Danny Lee in the title role. Although there were several other similar superhero productions in Hong Kong, "The Super Inframan" is the first. With help from Japanese SPFX artists under Sadamasa Arikawa, they also produced a Japanese-styled monster movie, "The Mighty Peking Man", in 1977. In 2001, Buki X-1 Productions, a French fan-based production company, produced its own series, "Jushi Sentai France Five" (now called "Shin Kenjushi France Five"), a tribute to Toei's long running Super Sentai series. In 2004, Peter Tatara (with his company Experimental Amateur Hero Productions) produced a low-budget superhero video series called "Johnny Robo", which is a tribute/deconstruction/parody of Kamen Rider and the Henshin Hero genre. The low-budget television series "Kaiju Big Battel" directly parodies kaiju and Kyodai Hero films and series by immersing their own costumed characters in professional wrestling matches among cardboard buildings. In 2006, the South Korean series "Erexion" premiered as a "children's special effects drama;" its style is reminiscent of tokusatsu techniques. In 2006, Mighty Moshin' Emo Rangers premiered on the internet as a Power Rangers spoof, but was quickly picked up by MTV UK for broadcast. In 2006, Insector Sun, a low-budget tribute to Kamen Rider was produced by Brazilian fans. In addition, a Thai Sentai-style series "Sport Ranger" began broadcasting on August 2006.

Adaptations

"Godzilla, King of the Monsters!" was first released in English in 1956 (Rather than simply being dubbed, this was an entirely re-edited version of the Japanese original which restructured the plot to incorporate a new character played by American actor Raymond Burr). Ultraman gained popularity when it too was dubbed for American audiences in the 1960s.

The primary influx of tokusatsu adaptations came in the 1990s, starting in 1993 with Saban Entertainment's purchase of footage from Toei's sixteenth installment of their long-running Super Sentai series, "Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger" to become "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers" and start the popular Power Rangers franchise. An adaptation of footage from "Choujinki Metalder", "Jikuu Senshi Spielban", and "Uchuu Keiji Shaider", several series in the Metal Heroes series, became "VR Troopers" in 1994. This was followed by an adaptation of the ninth series in the Kamen Rider, "Kamen Rider BLACK RX", into "Saban's Masked Rider". In 1996 and 1997, "Juukou B-Fighter" and its sequel "B-Fighter Kabuto" became "Big Bad Beetleborgs" and its sequel "Beetleborgs Metallix". DiC Entertainment, in 1994, purchased the footage for "Denkou Choujin Gridman" to become "Superhuman Samurai Syber-Squad". Most recently, there are plans to adapt the twelfth Kamen Rider series, "Kamen Rider Ryuki", into "Kamen Rider Dragon Knight", which is to be broadcast in 2009.

Original American productions

American production companies also had a hand in creating what are termed by fans as "American Tokusatsu." The syndicated series "Tattooed Teenage Alien Fighters from Beverly Hills" was a low budget attempt at competing with the Power Rangers. Saban's "The Mystic Knights of Tir Na Nog" was an original production by Saban to emulate their own Power Rangers series. The syndicated "Big Wolf on Campus" and Nickelodeon's "Animorphs" are also described as "American Tokusatsu" due to the techniques they employed.

Foreign productions as tokusatsu

In Japan, several English language live action series are dubbed into Japanese and considered tokusatsu programs. English language television programs such as "Thunderbirds", "Doctor Who", "Lost in Space", "Smallville", "Wonder Woman", "MacGyver", "Stargate SG-1", "Battlestar Galactica", "Red Dwarf", "The Greatest American Hero", "Knight Rider", and even "Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends" are considered as tokusatsu for the special effects techniques and themes that they utilize. []

References

*Martinez, Dolores P. "The Worlds of Japanese Popular Culture: Gender, Shifting Boundaries, and Global Cultures". ISBN 0521637295
*Allison, Anne. "Millennial Monsters: Japanese Toys and the Global Imagination". ISBN 0520245652
*Grays, Kevin. "Welcome to the Wonderful World of Japanese Fantasy" ("Markalite" Vol. 1, Summer 1990, Kaiju Productions/Pacific Rim Publishing)
*Yoshida, Makoto & Ikeda, Noriyoshi and Ragone, August. "The Making of "Godzilla Vs. Biollante" - They Call it "Tokusatsu" ("Markalite" Vol. 1, Summer 1990, Kaiju Productions/Pacific Rim Publishing)
*Godziszewski, Ed. "The Making of Godzilla" ("G-FAN" #12, November/December 1994, Daikaiju Enterprises)
*Ryfle, Steve. "Japan's Favorite Mon-Star: The Unauthorized Biography of Godzilla". ECW Press, 1999. ISBN 1-55022-348-8.
*Craig, Timothy J. "Japan Pop!: Inside the World of Japanese Popular Culture" ISBN 0765605600

Footnotes

External links

* [http://www.henshinonline.com/ Henshin! Online - Specializes in updates/articles on tokusatsu and anime.]
* [http://www.scifijapan.com/ Sci-Fi Japan]
* [http://www.japanhero.com/ Japan Hero - Everything you wanted to know about superheroes in Japan!]
* [http://usfjaponaise.free.fr/ Dans l'univers de la SF japonaise...] - French fansite with photos of several Tokusatsu series
* [http://incolor.inetnebr.com/stuart/henshin/index.htm Henshin Hall of Fame] - Large information source about Tokusatsu, focused mainly on the Henshin Heroes genre


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