The War in Space

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The War in Space
War in Space 1977.jpg
Original Japanese poster
Directed by Jun Fukuda
Produced by Fumio Tanaka
Tomoyuki Tanaka
Written by Shuichi Nagahara
Ryuzo Nakanishi
Starring Hiroshi Miyauchi
Akihiko Hirata
Gorō Mutsumi
William Ross
Music by Toshiaki Tsushima
Cinematography Yuzuru Aizawa
Distributed by Toho
Release dates
  • December 17, 1977 (1977-12-17)
Running time
91 min
Language Japanese

The War in Space, released in Japan as Great Planet War: THE WAR IN SPACE (惑星大戦争 THE WAR IN SPACE Wakusei Daisensō: Za uō in Supēsu"?), is a tokusatsu science fiction film produced and released by Toho Studios in 1977.


While the concept and production of The War in Space was spurred by the international success of Star Wars, the film is actually an outer space redressing of Toho's undersea adventure Atragon and the groundbreaking anime series Space Battleship Yamato. The War in Space was originally announced as a sequel to Battle in Outer Space. Design-wise, the UNSF Gohten is a cross between the Space Battleship Yamato and the Gotengo.


The movie starts out in 1988 with pilot Koji Miyoshi's return to Japan in response to electromagnetic interference that is plaguing the world following a comet scare. Miyoshi is quickly reunited with old friends and acquaintances upon his arrival, although the reunion is cut short as UFOs began to appear all across America as the UN's Space Station Terra is also destroyed in orbit. This series of events prompts Miyoshi to meet with Masato Takigawa and request that the United Nations Space Forces' Gohten Project - construction of the UNSF Gohten, is completed. The request falls on deaf ears until the aliens from the distant planet of Yomi in Messier 13 who have been behind the recent disturbances bungle a plan to kidnap Takigawa, at which point work on the Gohten commences amongst global chaos from attacking Hell Fighter UFO's. Following a fierce battle at the Gohten’s base, the craft is finally launched as it makes its way to Venus, the suspected location of the invaders’ base of operations, to put an end to the alien threat.


  • Kensaku Morita as Koji Miyoshi, Duty Officer, United Nations Space Bureau
  • Yuko Asano as Jun Takigawa, United Nations
  • Masaya Oki as Reisuke Muroi, Flight Instructor, Japan Air Self Defense Forces
  • Ryo Ikebe as Masato Takigawa, Doctor of Space Engineering, Commander of UNSF Goten
  • Katsutoshi Atarashi as Tadashi Mikasa, Crewmember, Space Station Terra
  • Hiroshi Miyauchi as Kazuo Fuyuki, Japan Air Self Defense Forces
  • David Perin as Jimmy, Space Fighter Pilot, United Nations Space Forces
  • Takashi Kanematsu as Tetsuo Kusaka, Japan Air Self Defense Forces
  • Futoshi Kikuchi as Goro Minato, Japan Air Self Defense Forces
  • Hideji Otaki as Dr. Matsuzawa, Director of United Nations Space Bureau, Japan Branch
  • Akihiko Hirata as Commander Oishi, Japan Defence Forces
  • William Ross as Dr. Schmitt/Commander Hell
  • Toshikazu Moritagawa as Ishiyama, UNSF Goten Gunnery Group Leader
  • Gorō Mutsumi as Heru, Commander-in-Chief of Planet Yomi Expeditionary Forces
  • Isao Hashimoto as Scientist A, United Nations Space Forces, Japan Branch
  • Go Endo as Scientist B, United Nations Space Forces, Japan Branch
  • Shoji Nakayama as Staff Officer, Japan Self Defense Forces Headquarters
  • Wataru Yamamoto as UNSF Goten Pilot
  • Yu Naoki as UNSF Goten Co-pilot
  • Yosuke Takemura as UNSF Goten Communications Officer A
  • Shinichi Yoshimiya as UNSF Goten Communications Officer B
  • Shinji Kawabata as UNSF Goten Bridge Officer A
  • Koichi Yoshida as UNSF Goten Bridge Officer B
  • Fumitsugu Hayata as UNSF Goten Bridge Officer C
  • Junichi Eto as UNSF Goten Crew Member A
  • Osamu Murashima as UNSF Goten Crew Member B
  • Susumu Ootani as UNSF Goten Crew Member C
  • Isao Setoyama as UNSF Goten Radar Officer
  • Mammoth Suzuki as the Space Beast

DVD release[edit]

2006 US DVD release

A DVD of the film was released in the United States on April 25, 2006 with both English and Japanese soundtracks. Included on the disc was an interview with special effects director for the film, Teruyoshi Nakano.

External links[edit]