Filmmaker Shusuke Kaneko is perhaps best known to genre fans for his acclaimed 1990s trilogy GAMERA: GUARDIAN OF THE UNIVERSE, GAMERA 2: ATTACK OF LEGION, and GAMERA 3: REVENGE OF IRYS, as well as his revisionist take on the king of monsters, GODZILLA, MOTHRA, AND KING GHIDORAH, GIANT MONSTERS ALL-OUT ATTACK, and for episodes of ULTRAMAN MAX and ULTRA Q: DARK FANTASY. But this is just one aspect of a wide-ranging, award-winning career that also includes the thriller PYROKINESIS, the hit manga adaptations DEATH NOTE and DEATH NOTE 2: THE LAST NAME, and forays into sci-fi, horror, action, comedy, and musicals.
Shinji Higuchi is an award-winning filmmaker whose directorial credits include LORELEI, the ATTACK ON TITAN movies, and SHIN GODZILLA, for which he won a Japanese Academy Prize. He is also well-known for directing the special effects for Shusuke Kaneko’s Heisei GAMERA trilogy and as one of the founders of Daicon/Gainax. Higuchi contributed to the hit anime series NEON GENESIS EVANGELION, directed by close friend Hideaki Anno, with whom he later collaborated on such projects as GIANT GOD WARRIOR APPEARS IN TOKYO and the upcoming SHIN ULTRAMAN.
Shinichi Wakasa is one of Japan’s most acclaimed tokusatsu artists, a special effects wizard specializing in creature creation, sculpting, modeling, and makeup effects. His company Monsters Inc. has created kaiju suits for numerous films, including three Heisei-era Godzilla features beginning with GODZILLA VS. MECHAGODZILLA II; Shusuke Kaneko’s GAMERA 2: ATTACK OF THE LEGION; and Toho’s REBIRTH OF MOTHRA trilogy. But he is perhaps best known for his stunning redesigns of Godzilla for the millennium era, as seen in five films including GODZILLA 2000, GODZILLA: TOKYO SOS, and GODZILLA FINAL WARS.
Michiru Oshima is an award-winning composer who has written more than 100 original scores for film, television, anime, video games, and concerts. She is well known among kaiju fans for scoring GODZILLA VS. MEGAGUIRUS, GODZILLA AGAINST MECHAGODZILLA, and GODZILLA: TOKYO S.O.S. For the 2019 concert KAIJU CRESCENDO: AN EVENING OF JAPANESE MONSTER MUSIC, Oshima conducted suites of her three Godzilla scores and premiered a new piece of music, GODZILLA IN CHICAGO, written specifically for the event.
INTERVIEW: BEAR McCREARY
Emmy and BAFTA Award-winning composer Bear McCreary burst onto the scene scoring the influential and revered series BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. He has since become one of the most sought-after talents in the music industry today, scoring such projects as THE WALKING DEAD, MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D., Sony PlayStation’s award-winning game GOD OF WAR, 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE, and the Universal/Blumhouse smash hit HAPPY DEATH DAY. He joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss his work on Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures’ GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS.
INTERVIEW: DAVID ARNOLD
Grammy and Emmy Award-winning composer David Arnold has a distinguished career going back three decades in which he has composed music for the legendary JAMES BOND series, the acclaimed TV series SHERLOCK, and blockbuster films such as INDEPENDENCE DAY and 2 FAST 2 FURIOUS among so many others. Born in Luton, England, Arnold’s breakthrough score for Roland Emmerich’s STARGATE propelled him to being one of the most sought after composers of the 1990s and beyond. Arnold joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss his memorable score from Tri-Star Pictures’ GODZILLA (1998).
Oscar-nominated screenwriter Tab Murphy (GORILLAS IN THE MIST) has worked extensively in feature animation. His credits include Disney’s HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, TARZAN, ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE, and BROTHER BEAR, plus the DC animated features BATMAN/SUPERMAN: APOCALYPSE and BATMAN: YEAR ONE. He is now writing a remake of the cult ghost story THE CHANGELING. Murphy will discuss writing GODZILLA 2, the unmade sequel to Roland Emmerich’s GODZILLA, for TriStar.
DESIGNING GODZILLA 1994
Ricardo Delgado is a film and comic book artist who has worked on TV shows including STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE, and films including THE INCREDIBLES, MEN IN BLACK, APOLLO 13, SPECIES, THE MATRIX RELOADED, THE MATRIX REVOLUTIONS, THE HAUNTED MANSION, TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES (2014), APOLLO 13, ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES, EVAN ALMIGHTY, ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE, and others. He created the Age of Reptiles comic book series for Dark Horse. Ricardo’s latest novel is Dracula of Transylvania. He joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss his creature design work on Jan DeBont’s unmade GODZILLA 1994 project.
DESIGNING GODZILLA 1994
Carlos Huante was born in East L.A. and attended Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. His pro career in animation lasted for many years before he began working in the film industry. He’s worked for Rick Baker, Rob Bottin, Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, Guillermo Del Toro, the Chiodo Bros., and many others, on such films as MEN IN BLACK (I and II), MIGHTY JOE YOUNG, HELLBOY, and WAR OF THE WORLDS. He has also worked for ILM at Lucas Digital as part of the creature development team. Carlos’ latest creature book is Rasca, and his latest fine art book is titled Blind Spot. He joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss creature designs for Jan DeBont’s unmade GODZILLA 1994 project.
Norman England is a filmmaker, journalist, and photographer who moved to Japan from New York City in 1992. He began covering Japanese movie sets with GAMERA 3 in 1998, writing for publications such as Fangoria, Starlog, The Japan Times, etc. He directed the documentary BRINGING GODZILLA DOWN TO SIZE, and his first film, THE IDOL, was recently released in the US by SRS Cinema. Today, Norman lives in Tokyo where he subtitles feature films, shoots production stills on Japanese movie sets, and writes a monthly column for Eiga Hiho, Japan’s biggest selling cinema magazine.
Ed Godziszewski is the editor and publisher of Japanese Giants magazine and author of The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Godzilla. He is co-author, together with Steve Ryfle, of Ishiro Honda: A Life in Film, From Godzilla to Kurosawa (Wesleyan Univ. Press). Together with Steve Ryfle, he has contributed to several audio commentaries for Japanese science fiction and monster films, and co-produced the documentary film BRINGING GODZILLA DOWN TO SIZE.
Stuart Galbraith IV
Film historian Stuart Galbraith IV’s books include The Emperor and the Wolf, a joint biography of Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune, which inspired the documentary MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI; Monsters are Attacking Tokyo!, an oral history of Japanese sci-fi film; Japanese Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films, the first English-language study of the genre, and The Toho Studios Story. He has contributed audio commentaries, essays, and other content to video releases of RASHOMON, SEVEN SAMURAI, MUSASHI MIYAMOTO and many other films. He joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss the work of Jun Fukuda.
INTERVIEW: BRAD WARNER
For over 15 years, Brad Warner worked for Tsuburaya Productions, the company founded by Eiji Tsuburaya and the creators of Ultraman. He has appeared in a number of Ultraman TV shows and movies, and he contributed to the creation of ULTRAMAN TIGA, ULTRAMAN GAIA, and other Ultraman TV shows and theatrical features. He is the author of Letters to a Dead Friend About Zen, Hardcore Zen, Sit Down and Shut Up, Don’t Be a Jerk, and several other books about Zen Buddhism. He was ordained a Zen Buddhist priest by Gudo Nishijima Roshi. He grew up in Akron, Ohio and Nairobi, Kenya.
Allyson Adams is an award-winning costume designer, screenwriter, playwright, educator, and activist. She has had numerous plays produced in both Los Angeles and in Montana, where she now lives and works. In 2005 she produced and starred in PEACE IS A WOMAN’S JOB, a PBS docudrama about Montana’s first Congresswoman Jeannette Rankin, and toured the one-woman show for a decade. She published the book The Rebel & The King written by her late father, actor Nick Adams, about his friendship with Elvis Presley. She joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to discuss her father’s work at Toho studios in the 1960s.
Pat Saperstein is Deputy Editor of the entertainment industry publication Variety, where she oversees breaking news, obituaries, restaurants, books, and film. She started her career as U.S. editor of Le Film Francais and has an extensive background in international and independent film and documentaries. A frequent film festival juror and moderator for panels and Q&As, she has contributed to books including Cannes: Fifty Years of Sun Sex and Celluloid, Boffo, EAT: Los Angeles, and DRINK: Los Angeles. Pat will discuss her father, producer Henry G. Saperstein, and his collaborations with Toho.
Stan Hyde has been involved in science fiction fandom most of his life, going to his first World Science Fiction Convention at 17, and starting clubs like the Science Fiction Association of Victoria, and Monster Attack Team-Canada, a science fiction and monster model building club that has been active since 1989. He joins KAIJU MASTERCLASS to talk about his experiences attending EXPO ‘70, where the film GAMERA VS. JIGER takes place.
Sean Linkenback is an Atlanta-based attorney, who is known in the collectibles world as the author of The Unauthorized Guide to Godzilla Collectibles, the first comprehensive guide on the subject in the English language, and The Art of Japanese Monsters, a comprehensive guide to worldwide movie posters from Japanese genre films. A longtime collectibles expert and historian, Sean is a former advisor to the Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide and Warren’s Movie Poster Price Guide. He has written frequently on Godzilla, comics, and film posters, including a column in Movie Collector’s World.
John LeMay is the author of more than 20 published books, many of them on film history. He is also the editor and publisher of The Lost Films Fanzine and has been published in magazines like Cinema Retro, G-Fan, and Mad Scientist.
Kevin Derendorf is a lifelong fan of Japanese genre fiction, resulting the creation of the Maser Patrol blog (maserpatrol.wordpress.com) and the book Kaiju for Hipsters: 101 “Alternative” Giant Monster Movies. You can find him at anime conventions talking about tokusatsu, at tokusatsu conventions talking about anime, as a guest on various podcasts, and generally being a nuisance on social media.
Patrick Macias is the author of TokyoScope: The Japanese Cult Film Companion, the editor-in-chief of Otaku USA magazine, and a contributor to home video releases from The Criterion Collection and Arrow Video. He lives in Japan and is working on a new book for Sutherland House titled An Eternal Thought in the Mind of Godzilla.
INTERVIEW: BOB EGGLETON
Bob Eggleton is a nine time Hugo Award-winner for Best Pro Artist in science fiction and fantasy. His illustrations have appeared in Dark Horse Comics, Random House Godzilla books, IDW’s Godzilla comic series, and on covers for Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine. In motion pictures, he has worked as a concept artist on SPHERE (1997), JIMMY NEUTRON BOY GENIUS (2001), and THE ANT BULLY (2006). He also illustrated matte paintings on the film THE iDOL (2007) and was an extra in GODZILLA AGAINST MECHAGODZILLA (2002).
Matt Frank is a comic artist and illustrator, whose work can be found in most of the IDW Godzilla comics series, including Godzilla: Rulers of Earth and Godzilla: Rage Across Time. Other kaiju-related projects of his include a poster celebrating the Funimation home video release of SHIN GODZILLA, collaborating with Tsuburaya Productions on a new Redman: The Kaiju Hunter comic, and serving as an associate producer and the main artist for the Blu-ray set Gamera: The Complete Collection. Matt has also made packaging art for KONGA TNT and HOWL FROM BEYOND THE FOG for SRS Cinema, with more to come.