A new international trailer for the second series recap of Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt was released at a screening of the first recap movie at the Sunrise Festival 2017 Rise High into the Summer Sky!! (Part 1: 11 – 25 August, Part 2: 2 – 16 September) which is taking place in three theaters in Shinjuku. December Sky was screened with English audio and Japanese subtitles. as well as a talk show by the staff.
Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt is available via a paid streaming service and has been a big hit. The second series will be compiled into a recap movie titled Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: Bandit Flower that will also contain brand new scenes. It will be screened in Japanese theaters for two weeks from Saturday 18 November.
At the theater, which also had international fans in the audience, Naruyoshi Kikuchi (music), Naohiro Ogata (Thunderbolt producer), and Akane Hagino (International PR) held a talk show about reactions to the film overseas, and the charm of Thunderbolt that has reached beyond Japanese borders. They also played video messages from the North American voice acting cast! They spoke about the reaction of the locals and the differences in recording. Also, the international version of the trailer for Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: Bandit Flower was released! Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt is a hot topic in North America as well.
Date and Time: Tuesday 15 August 2017, 21:00-
Venue: Shinjuku Picadilly
Guests: Naruyoshi Kikuchi (music), Naohiro Ogata (Thunderbolt producer), and Akane Hagino (International PR)
Video messages: Stephanie Sheh (Audio director), Johnny Yong Bosch (Daryl), Cherami Leigh (Claudia)
Thoughts on the Screening of the English version of December Sky
Producer Ogata: ‘We originally animated it to appeal to international audiences so I thought that English would suit it, but how was it? [laugh] (applause from the audience) Thank you very much [laugh]. It was very hard to make an international version so I would like to speak about that today.’
About the work
Hagino: ‘Thunderbolt did not have many issues regarding the schedule. Unicorn was the first film we used this initiative with but it was really very difficult back then.’
Ogata: ‘It took quite a bit of time to complete it. In Japan, we get the voice actors to record even before color is added to the animation but it seems that in North America they are not accustomed to that so it was difficult.’
Hagino: ‘That’s right. In North America, they record one at a time and it may take three to five times longer than Japanese recordings. That’s why a recording that would take two days in Japan, takes a week in the USA so that schedule was tough.’
Kikuchi: ‘Usually, music is made after the film has been created but for this work, including the TV series and everything, I received the order before the work was completed and I made the music. We had meetings and said, ‘Let’s go with this atmosphere’ and ‘Let’s use this jazz!’ and moved forward while discussing with each other.’
Video messages from north American Staff and cast
Stephanie: ‘Thunderbolt is more unpleasant? Dirty? It was different to the other Gundam series I have worked on.
Hmm, there is a better way to express this! Right, dirty, dark, that makes the story more interesting. We didn’t hesitate to express how sad, dark, and scary war is. I think Gundam often shows the bad sides of war but Thunderbolt shows a completely different aspect, in my opinion.’
Johnny: ‘What I like about Daryl is his personality. He fights for the people around him. He worries about the people in his environment and he would do anything for them. He is also an amazing sniper. But to say it in one word, its definitely his humanity. He doesn’t need detailed reasons or explanations, he is just a wonderful person and that’s why I like him.’
Cherami: I was very excited to learn I would be playing Claudia. This is my second time playing a character from the Gundam series (N.B: Cherami played Kudelia in Iron-Blooded Orphans) and of course I love those characters but Claudia is very strong and energetic and I had never played a character with such a low voice so it really was a challenge and was very fun. She has lived a difficult life and it was especially fun to act out the dramatic times. In contrast with the very strong side of her, there is a hidden part of her that carries a lot of pain. I want everyone to understand her fragility.’
Comments on production after the video messages
Kikuchi: ‘The setting was that they like American oldies and jazz so rather than creating the music for a movie, it was more like making a playlist for their iPods. We started from there and rather than pop music, I felt that more aggressive music would suit the work better and I suggested it. The inspiration for this was free jazz. Electronic sound that changes in the middle was made with the image of the music that is featured in space movies in mind.’
Ogata: ‘Things like making the music free jazz and how to express Yasuo Otagaki’s work through animation were arranged following the worlds in the Gundam series up until now.’