Anime Expo Hosts Pokémon Director Masamitsu Hidaka
posted on by Egan Loo
Anime Expo has announced that director Masamitsu Hidaka (Pokémon, Juu Senshi Garukiba, Linebarrels of Iron) will be its first Japanese Guest of Honor at the July 3-6 convention in the Los Angeles Convention Center. Hidaka started out as a storyboarder and assistant director on a number of Sunrise anime, including Dirty Pair, Dragonar, Mashin Eiyūden Wataru 2, and later s-CRY-ed. He eventually landed in the director's chair for Sunrise's Juu Senshi Garukiba and then his most well-known work, Shogakukan's Pokémon. He directed the first Pokémon television series and Pokémon Advance (pictured at right), and he contributed to several of the movie spinoffs.
Hidaka next project will be Linebarrels of Iron, Gonzo animation studio's adaptation of Eiichi Shimizu and Tomohiro Shimoguchi's popular "real battle action robot" manga. The story centers on a middle school boy named Kōichi Hayase who was seriously injured by an apparent accident: the fall of an artificial satellite in 2013. Hayase wakes up half a year later with strange powers. Then, in 2016, a mysterious 21-meter-tall robot named Linebarrel appears before him. Hayase joins Linebarrel's other pilot, Emi Kizaki, in fighting for Juda, the world's largest medical equipment maker which happens to secretly own seven Machina robots like Linebarrel. Hidaka and Gonzo are planning to release this anime later this year.