Shinji Higuchi

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Shinji Higuchi
樋口 真嗣
Higuchi stands next to a poster of his 2016 film Shin Godzilla. He wears a T-Shirt emblazoned with the text "Greetings from Monster Island", featuring an illustration of Megalon, Gigan, Godzilla, and Jet Jaguar posing in the 1973 film Godzilla vs. Megalon.
Higuchi in 2016
Born (1965-09-22) September 22, 1965 (age 57)
Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan
NationalityJapanese
Occupations
  • Film director
  • special effects director
  • screenwriter
  • storyboard artist
Years active1984–present
Notable work

Shinji Higuchi (Japanese: 樋口 真嗣, Hepburn: Higuchi Shinji, born September 22, 1965) is a Japanese filmmaker and storyboard artist. He is one of the most successful Japanese filmmakers and the top tokusatsu film director.[1][2][3]

Higuchi became known for his work on Gamera: Guardian of the Universe, for which he won the Special Technology Award at the 19th Japan Academy Film Prize. In 2005, he made his feature directorial debut on Lorelei: The Witch of the Pacific Ocean. His second feature film, Sinking of Japan (2006), was second place at the Bunshun Kiichigo Awards. His 2015 live-action two-part film adaptation of Hajime Isayama's manga series, Attack on Titan, won the Excellence in Theatrical Live Action Film award at the 2016 VFX-JAPAN Awards.[4] In 2017, Higuchi and Hideaki Anno won the Director of the Year award at the 40th Japan Academy Film Prize, for their work on the 2016 kaiju film, Shin Godzilla. His 2022 film, Shin Ultraman, was a major success in Japan,[5] and has received generally positive reviews from critics internationally.[6]

Biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

Higuchi was born on September 22, 1965,[7] in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. When Higuchi was in junior high school, his aunt took him on a tour of Toho Studios, where she worked on commercials. Upon watching Toho's special effects crew at work, Higuchi became inspired and frequently visited the filming sets.[8]

Early career[edit]

Higuchi entered the Japanese film industry in 1984, working as an assistant modeler on The Return of Godzilla.[7] Two years later, he directed the special effects for Daicon's tokusatsu fan film Yamata no Orochi no Gyakushū.[9]

As a key Daicon/Gainax member, he played an important part in the creation of one of the most popular anime series, Neon Genesis Evangelion (1995). He was a writer and art director/storyboarder for the series. He was also the namesake for the show's protagonist, Shinji Ikari.[10] He later voice-acted a musician modeled after himself in two episodes of Karekano.[11]

Higuchi made his directorial debut in 1992 with the disaster film The Day the Sun Fissured: The Great Tokyo Earthquake which he produced for Tokyo Fire Department.[12]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Director SFX director Storyboard artist Miscellaneous Notes Ref(s)
1984 The Return of Godzilla No No No Yes Assistant modeler [7]
1985 Yamata no Orochi no Gyakushū No Yes No No [9]
1987 Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise No No No Yes Assistant director [13]
1988 Tokyo: The Last Megalopolis No No Yes No [14]
Gunbuster No No Yes No [15]
1991 Mikadroid: Robokill Beneath Discoclub Layla No Yes No No [16]
1992 The Day the Sun Fissured: The Great Tokyo Earthquake Yes No No No [9]
1994 Giant Robo: The Day the Earth Stood Still No No Yes No
1995 Gamera: Guardian of the Universe No Yes No No [9]
Neon Genesis Evangelion No No Yes Yes Screenwriter [17]
1996 Space Ship Remnant 6 No Yes No No [18]
Gamera 2: Attack of Legion No Yes No No [19]
1997 The End of Evangelion No Yes No No [20]
1998 Love & Pop No Yes No No [21]
1999 Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris No Yes No No [22]
Betterman No No Yes No
2000 Sakuya: Slayer of Demons No Yes No No [23]
2001 Pistol Opera No Yes No No [24]
The Princess Blade No Yes No No [25]
2003 Pokémon: Jirachi—Wish Maker No No Yes No [26]
Dino Crisis 3 No No Yes No
Dragon Head No No No Yes Visual effects designer [27]
2005 Lorelei: The Witch of the Pacific Ocean Yes Yes No No [9]
2006 Sinking of Japan Yes No No No [9]
Onimusha No No Yes No
2007 Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone No No Yes No [28]
2008 Hidden Fortress: The Last Princess No No Yes No [7]
2009 Evangelion: 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance No No Yes No [29]
2010 Monster Magnitude: 9 Yes No No Yes Screenwriter
2012 Giant God Warrior Appears in Tokyo Yes No No No [30]
The Floating Castle Yes No No No [31]
Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo No No Yes No [32]
2013 Kill la Kill No No Yes No
2014 Garm Wars: The Last Druid No No Yes No [33]
2015 Attack on Titan Yes No No No [34]
Attack on Titan: End of the World Yes No No No [35]
2016 Shin Godzilla Yes Yes Yes No [36]
2018 Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan Yes No No No [37]
2020 The 12 Day Tale of the Monster that Died in 8 No No No Yes Original story [38]
2021 Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time No No Yes No [39]
2022 Ribbon No Yes No No [40]
Shin Ultraman Yes No No No [41]
Kamen Rider Black Sun No No No Yes Visual concept designer [42]
2023 Instigator: Umeyasu Fujieda No No No Yes Trailer creator [43]
Instigator: Umeyasu Fujieda 2 No No No Yes Trailer creator [44]


Accolades[edit]

Award ceremony Year Work(s) Category Result Note(s) Ref.
Japan Academy Film Prize 1996 Gamera: Guardian of the Universe Special Technology Won [45]
2013 The Floating Castle Director of the Year Nominated With Isshin Inudo [46]
2017 Shin Godzilla Director of the Year Won With Hideaki Anno [47]
Line News Awards 2022 Cultural Person Won [48]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "庵野秀明企画・脚本『シン・ウルトラマン』が日本公開中。半世紀愛されるシリーズの新作" [Shin Ultraman planned and written by Hideaki Anno is now open in Japan. New work from a series beloved for half a century]. JFF+ (in Japanese). Japan Foundation. June 30, 2022. Archived from the original on November 29, 2022. Retrieved November 29, 2022.
  2. ^ "【独占】樋口真嗣監督に聞く、庵野秀明氏とシン・ウルトラマンで目指す「断絶の解消」" [(Exclusive) Interview with Director Shinji Higuchi: 'Elimination of discontinuity' for Shin Ultraman with Hideaki Anno]. Business + IT (in Japanese). p. 1. Archived from the original on November 29, 2022. Retrieved November 29, 2022.
  3. ^ "【樋口真嗣監督インタビュー】特撮映画の牽引者は、『シン・ウルトラマン』でなにを描くのか?" [(Interview with director Shinji Higuchi) What will the tokusatsu film leader draw in Shin Ultraman?]. Pen Online (in Japanese). May 13, 2022. Archived from the original on November 29, 2022. Retrieved November 29, 2022.
  4. ^ Inc, Natasha. "CGとVFXの祭典、VFX-JAPANアワードで「バクマン。」が実写映画部門の頂点に". 映画ナタリー (in Japanese). Retrieved August 4, 2022. {{cite web}}: |last= has generic name (help)
  5. ^ "Fantasia Festival | Shin Ultraman". Fantasia Festival. Retrieved August 4, 2022.
  6. ^ "Shin Ultraman". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Archived from the original on July 27, 2022. Retrieved August 4, 2022.
  7. ^ a b c d "隠し砦の三悪人 THE LAST PRINCESS - 映画・映像". Toho. Archived from the original on June 28, 2022. Retrieved June 28, 2022.
  8. ^ Haraguchi, Tomoo (March 12, 2021). Dream Fragment: Toho Special Effects Movies (in Japanese). Hobby Japan. pp. 106–108. ISBN 978-4-7986-2447-1.
  9. ^ a b c d e f "日本沈没 - 映画・映像". Toho. Archived from the original on June 28, 2022. Retrieved June 28, 2022.
  10. ^ "Character Name Origins: NGE". Archived from the original on August 19, 2007.
  11. ^ "untitled". gainax.co.jp. Archived from the original on February 11, 2005. Retrieved March 4, 2015.
  12. ^ "樋口真嗣(Shinji Higuchi)氏: 仲間に助けられてここまで来た それに尽きます". 樋口真嗣(Shinji Higuchi)氏: 仲間に助けられてここまで来た それに尽きます (in Japanese). Retrieved June 29, 2022.
  13. ^ "王立宇宙軍 オネアミスの翼 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  14. ^ Inc, Natasha. "「帝都」シリーズ初BD化、樋口真嗣が新たにジャケットをデザイン". 映画ナタリー (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022. {{cite web}}: |last= has generic name (help)
  15. ^ "トップをねらえ! 劇場版:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  16. ^ "オリジナルビデオ ミカドロイド (1991)について 映画データベース", allcinema (in Japanese), retrieved August 3, 2022
  17. ^ "ローレライ - 映画・映像|東宝WEB SITE". www.toho.co.jp. Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  18. ^ "宇宙貨物船レムナント6 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  19. ^ "ガメラ2 レギオン襲来:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  20. ^ "THE END OF EVANGELION 新世紀エヴァンゲリオン劇場版 Air/まごころを、君に : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  21. ^ "ラブ&ポップ:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  22. ^ "ガメラ3 邪神覚醒:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  23. ^ "さくや 妖怪伝:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  24. ^ "ピストルオペラ:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  25. ^ "修羅雪姫:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  26. ^ "劇場版ポケットモンスター アドバンスジェネレーション 七夜の願い星ジラーチ:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  27. ^ "ドラゴンヘッド:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  28. ^ "ヱヴァンゲリヲン新劇場版:序:映画作品情報・あらすじ・評価|MOVIE WALKER PRESS 映画". MOVIE WALKER PRESS (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  29. ^ "ヱヴァンゲリヲン新劇場版:破 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  30. ^ "巨神兵東京に現わる 劇場版 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  31. ^ "のぼうの城 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  32. ^ "ヱヴァンゲリヲン新劇場版:Q : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  33. ^ "押井守監督『ガルム・ウォーズ』メイキング映像解禁 過酷な自然環境でのアクション撮影". Oricon News (in Japanese). Oricon Inc. April 28, 2016. Archived from the original on August 10, 2016. Retrieved September 21, 2022.
  34. ^ "進撃の巨人 ATTACK ON TITAN : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  35. ^ "進撃の巨人 ATTACK ON TITAN エンド オブ ザ ワールド : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  36. ^ "Godzilla Resurgence Press Notes". SciFi Japan. June 13, 2016. Archived from the original on December 31, 2020. Retrieved September 21, 2022.
  37. ^ "【インタビュー】特撮映画の名手・樋口真嗣が描く"お仕事アニメ"の本気度。航空自衛隊とドラゴンと…異色だらけの話題作『ひそねとまそたん』". Entertainment Station (in Japanese). April 15, 2018. Archived from the original on April 16, 2022. Retrieved September 21, 2022.
  38. ^ "8日で死んだ怪獣の12日の物語 劇場版 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  39. ^ Hikawa, Ryūsuke; Kimata, Fuyu (2021). Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time Pamphlet (in Japanese). p. 74. ASIN B08Y8NVC8W.
  40. ^ "Ribbon : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  41. ^ "Shin Ultraman (live-action movie) - Anime News Network". Anime News Network. Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  42. ^ "白石和彌監督『仮面ライダーBlacksun』製作スタッフ発表 樋口真嗣氏や田口清隆氏が参加 11・21にキャラデザ解禁へ".
  43. ^ "仕掛人・藤枝梅安 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 4, 2022.
  44. ^ "仕掛人・藤枝梅安2 : 作品情報". 映画.com (in Japanese). Retrieved August 4, 2022.
  45. ^ "19th Japan Academy Film Prize". Japan Academy Film Prize. Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  46. ^ "36th Japan Academy Film Prize". Japan Academy Film Prize. Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  47. ^ Blair, Gavin J. (March 3, 2017). "'Godzilla Resurgence' Wins Big at 40th Japan Academy Prize Awards". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 3, 2022.
  48. ^ "LINE NEWS AWARDS 2022". LINE NEWS. Retrieved December 14, 2022.

External links[edit]