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Pacific Rim's del Toro Praises Oshii's Patlabor in Video

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Hellboy director cites robot anime as influence in Pacific Rim

Moviecollection began streaming an interview with director Guillermo del Toro (Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy, Pacific Rim) on Monday. In the interview, he talks about how he was introduced to the work of Mamoru Oshii (Angel's Egg, Ghost in the Shell, Patlabor The Mobile Police), and how the Patlabor series influenced his Pacific Rim movie. He also cites some other influences in his work, including other anime, and Japanese horror films and manga.

The questions and prompts del Toro is given are as follows:

  • I heard that you know director Mamoru Oshii personally.
  • What kinds of his work ethics were you influenced by?
  • Do you think that Oshii's work, that influences many animators within Japan, also influences others around the world?
  • Mamoru Oshii made this work in the 1980's. Do you think he was ahead of his time?
  • There are people who say that you and Oshii's works are focused on "social awareness."
  • What are some Japanese anime and/or television shows you've been influenced by?
  • What are your thoughts after seeing the trailer for The Next Generation Patlabor: Shuto Kessen?
  • Oshii's The Next Generation Patlabor: Shuto Kessen live-action film will premiere in Japan on Friday. The film is part of Oshii's live-action The Next Generation -Patlabor- project, which is set in Tokyo in 2013, and represents the "third generation" of Patlabor. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police has disbanded its Section 2 Division 1 of police robots, and Section 2 Division 2 barely survived the budget cuts due to the long recession.

    The project began with a seven-part series, which is composed of the "episode 0" and 12 full episodes helmed by chief director Mamoru Oshii and other directors. Each full episode is about 48 minutes long. The seventh and final part debuted in a two-week limited engagement in theaters on January 10.

    After the seven-part series, Oshii directed and wrote the feature-length film, which is expected to run about 100 minutes long. The film centers on the Section 2 team fighting against a terrorist group that has taken all of the 10 million residents of Tokyo hostage.

    The Patlabor franchise's original concept of police officers piloting robotic mecha (patrol labors or "Patlabors") was developed by HEADGEAR, a group consisting of director Oshii, script writer Kazunori Itō (.hack, Dirty Pair), mecha designer Yutaka Izubuchi (Eureka Seven, Mobile Suit Gundam franchise), character designer Akemi Takada (Kimagure Orange Road, Urusei Yatsura, Fancy Lala), and manga creator Masami Yuuki (Birdy the Mighty). The franchise spawned two original video anime, a television anime series, and three anime films. The last anime film, Patlabor WXIII, was released in theaters in Japan in 2002.

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