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Interview: Satoshi Kon


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rti9



Joined: 08 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 7:33 pm Reply with quote
Found the interview on the web archive:
http://web.archive.org/web/20050419061353/http://www.tkfd.or.jp/eng/division/public/supercool/sc01.shtml

His preference is independent of Japanese being his native language. As he clearly explained, he doesn't like the possibility of voice actors altering the way he chose the story to be.

GATSU wrote:
Alien: Yeah, the gay guys in TG felt like Jar Jar all over again. But Kon kind of balances it a bit by making Gin a joke, and a jerk, too. And yeah, I've really tried to like that thing, too, but I just can't do it. It's the only failure of his IMHO, since it's clearly trying to be more Hollywood than Japanese.

I don't get this. How is Hana a stereotype like Jar Jar? This bit also implies that you clearly know Japanese drag queens, doesn't it?
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jsevakis
ANN Director of New Media


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 7:51 pm Reply with quote
When I first interviewed Mr. Kon at BAAF years ago, his reasons for not liking dubs were that most people serious about film would turn up their nose at live action dubs, and he hoped his films would command the same amount of respect.

BTW, Hana from Tokyo Godfathers is a pretty dead-on impression of a Japanese drag queen. If you think he's that far off and offensive, spend a week in Gotanda sometime and walk around after midnight.
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TheVok



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 9:29 pm Reply with quote
Mohawk52 wrote:
Yeah, but when he's watching CB do you think he watches it in English then? Besides I don't think Mr Kon understands English. So why would he like his work in a language he doesn't understand?


Read the interview again ... given the context, he's talking about how other people watch his movies, not just himself.

I don't know why you would twist this into a question of how anime directors watch their own work ....
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GATSU



Joined: 03 Jan 2002
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 10:18 pm Reply with quote
rti:
Quote:
How is Hana a stereotype like Jar Jar?


Because they're both literally and figuratively cartoons? Rolling Eyes

Quote:
This bit also implies that you clearly know Japanese drag queens, doesn't it?


Well, I don't know about Japanese drag queens, but the ones in TG come off like the fairies you might see in Hollywood films. [Think The Birdcage.]
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Dargonxtc



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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2008 11:10 pm Reply with quote
jsevakis wrote:
Then you clearly don't read much of my writing on the site.

[links...]

Now now, no matter how matter-of-factly you say that, it isn't true. Even if you want it to be. Razz Hell, I was in many of those threads. But let's face it, your body of work is actually much much larger. And I was simply stating the feeling I get when reading the way you write much of that work. If it was incorrect to say that in general you hold dubs in a less favorable light from the get go, then you have my apologies, I stand corrected, I am sorry.

Perhaps this is somewhat my fault. As I will take the tones of previous writings, and apply them to the tone of future work. Like when I hear you say, "No, he's right. The people you meet at cons are the exception, not the rule". To me this means you really have no respect for the majority of the talent on a personal level. And to me that's got to interfere judging the final product on its own merits, instead of the people who made the final product. Or when I hear things like, "My all-time favorite dub is still Kite. Still the only dub that I've ever seen that, purely through brilliant acting and casting, has added an entirely new emotional layer to a story". Given the huge ammount of anime you have seen, it makes me think you don't entirely give dubs a fair shake. I mean come on! Ever? Now maybe I am right, or maybe not, but that's sort of the lens I view you through when your talking about dubs.

Now as I said before, and it certainly seems like it might need to be said again. This is not some sort of an attack on you. It is perfectly alright to have preferences. And you having a preference is all I was trying to say.
Quote:
I will, however, always call out what I consider to be lazy, uninspired work that often passes unnoticed among fan circles, who are often lost in details like syllable emphasis on Japanese names, and how many jokes are rewritten.
I actually hate reviews that focus on those things. So please don't stop doing this. I sort of have more to say, but I will leave it there.

TheVok wrote:
To be more precise, he would prefer his works to remain undubbed into other languages. (Sorry.)

That really surprises me. Many of the better anime directors I have read seem to realize what a visual medium it really is. And that it is meant to be seen and heard, but not necessarily read. And with Kon's work which so laboriously stylized and assents so heavily on the visual as a form of communication, that he doesn't subscribe to the same line of thought. Plus, unlike live-action, dubs in animation actually work.

jsevakis wrote:
When I first interviewed Mr. Kon at BAAF years ago, his reasons for not liking dubs were that most people serious about film would turn up their nose at live action dubs, and he hoped his films would command the same amount of respect.

So it is sort of a snootiness factor then.
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rti9



Joined: 08 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 3:04 am Reply with quote
GATSU wrote:
rti:
Quote:
How is Hana a stereotype like Jar Jar?


Because they're both literally and figuratively cartoons? Rolling Eyes

Did you read what jsevakis wrote?

GATSU wrote:
Quote:
This bit also implies that you clearly know Japanese drag queens, doesn't it?


Well, I don't know about Japanese drag queens, but the ones in TG come off like the fairies you might see in Hollywood films. [Think The Birdcage.]

Ironic that because you watched movies, you know how to differentiate the stereotypes from the real ones. In Japan.
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GATSU



Joined: 03 Jan 2002
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:07 am Reply with quote
rti:
Quote:
Did you read what jsevakis wrote?


I don't doubt the authenticity of Justin's experienced opinion, but I'm still offended by Kon's inability to do a better job at looking at the person behind the "act", considering that Kon's a director known more for character development than caricatures. Hana still came off as a guy they wanted as a punching bag more than a sidekick to the point that even Hard Gay has more depth than him.

Quote:
Ironic that because you watched movies, you know how to differentiate the stereotypes from the real ones. In Japan.


Well, I've also lived in a more "open-minded" town than others. So whether or not I know what Japanese drag queens are like, I do know that they're people with feelings, too-not just clowns for my amusement.
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rti9



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 12:54 pm Reply with quote
It's not about being open-minded towards homosexuals or not. Is that you are complaining about stereotypes, despite stereotyping yourself. You are oversimplifying drag queens if you think they are all like the ones you know. Many cross-dressers love to stay "in character" and being exaggerate. Just like caricatures. Maybe it's due to Japan's strong traditionalist society that they hyperbolize a bit more in Japan. I'm not saying you should like Hana, just don't hate him for not being the way you expected him to be.
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Mohawk52



Joined: 16 Oct 2003
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 2:01 pm Reply with quote
TheVok wrote:
Mohawk52 wrote:
Yeah, but when he's watching CB do you think he watches it in English then? Besides I don't think Mr Kon understands English. So why would he like his work in a language he doesn't understand?


Read the interview again ... given the context, he's talking about how other people watch his movies, not just himself.

I don't know why you would twist this into a question of how anime directors watch their own work ....
I wouldn't say I'm "twisting" it, just comprehending it differently. It's his work and he thinks anyone, from anywhere, should like it his way and only his way, because being a Japanese production made by Japanese people, to him it is the only way. I can understand that. I don't agree with it, but I understand it.
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GATSU



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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 8:24 pm Reply with quote
rti: I never said I knew any personally or that they're all like the ones I've encountered. I'm just arguing that, in TG, Kon goes for cheap lowbrow comedy more than any actual wit or charm.
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rti9



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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:57 am Reply with quote
Dislike Tokyo Godfathers all you want, just don't claim that Hana is a stereotype when he isn't.
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reanimator



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 4:51 am Reply with quote
eviltimes wrote:
So depressing that you ran out of time!

AAAHHHH !!!!!!!!!

Crying or Very sad


In order to have time extension, ANN might have to arrange an all-night event, or special trip plus wine & dine. That is difficult to pull off due to conflicting schedules. I think Justin asked all right questions with given time.
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GATSU



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:35 pm Reply with quote
rti: He's a stereotype in the sense that he's just playing a role, and not anything more than that.
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rti9



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 3:00 pm Reply with quote
That can be said about most fictional characters. If Jar Jar plays a role, so does Anakim.
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