ULTRAMAN Reunion at Monsterpalooza!
Stars of Original Series Coming to Burbank, CA
Source: Eliot Brodsky, Monsterpalooza
Official Site: monsterpalooza.com/april2013
Special Thanks to Jim Cirronella
Created by Tsuburaya Productions, ULTRAMAN (ウルトラマン 空想特撮シリーズ, Urutoraman: Kuso Tokusatsu Shirizu, 1966) was a ratings phenomenon in Japan that launched an ongoing franchise of television shows, movies, videos and merchandising. The series also aired in America, with the 39 episodes broadcast in syndication from the late 1960s to the early 1980s.
Now the stars of the original series are coming to California. Actors Susumu Kurobe (Hayata), Bin Furuya (Ultraman) and Hiroko Sakurai (Fuji) will be guests at the convention Monsterpalooza 2013 in Burbank, CA, meeting fans, signing autographs and taking part in a Q&A panel the weekend of April 12th -14th.
“Two years ago Monsterpalooza brought in special guest Haruo Nakajima [the original Godzilla suit actor],” Monsterpalooza organizer Eliot Brodsky told SciFi Japan. “Being a fan of Japanese monster movies it was a great thrill to meet and host a United States appearance for Mr. Nakajima and his daughter. Such wonderful dignified people. I was hoping to have future guests for Monsterpalooza from the Japanese monster world.”
“I was fortunate to learn that the ULTRAMAN cast consisting of Bin Furuya, Susumu Kurobe and Hiroko Sakurai were receptive to my invitation to join us for our 6th Monsterpalooza in Burbank California. With the assistance of Jim Cirronella, we were able to secure their appearance for April 12th -14th. This will be the first time all three ULTRAMAN cast members have appeared together in the United States.”
“My hope is to incorporate further guest appearances from the kaiju world at future Monsterpaloozas!”
Susumu Kurobe starred as Science Patrol member Shin Hayata, the alter ego of Ultraman. He made his acting debut in CHORUS OF DAWN (暁の合唱, Akatsuki no Gassho, 1962) and became a regular supporting actor in Toho monster movies such as GHIDORAH THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER (三大怪獣 地球最大の決戦, San Daikaiju Chikyu Saidai no Kessen, 1964), KING KONG ESCAPES (キングコングの逆襲, Kingu Kongu no Gyakushuu, 1967), SON OF GODZILLA (怪獣島の決戦 ゴジラの息子, Kaiju Toh no Kessen: Gojira no Musuko), and DESTROY ALL MONSTERS (怪獣総進撃, Kaiju Soshingeki, 1968). Kurobe returned to the Godzilla series in movies like GODZILLA VS KING GHIDORAH (ゴジラVSキングギドラ, Gojira tai Kingughidora, 1991) and GODZILLA VS MEGAGUIRUS (ゴジラ×メガギラス G消滅作戦, Gojira x Megagirasu: G Shometsu Sakusen, 2000).
He also appeared in Frank Sinatra’s NONE BUT THE BRAVE (1965), and as the villain in Toho’s INTERNATIONAL SECRET POLICE: KEY OF KEYS (国際秘密警察 鍵の鍵, Kokusai Himitsu Keisatsu: Kagi no Kag, 1966), the movie that was later reworked by Woody Allen into WHAT’S UP, TIGER LILY? (1966).
Over the decades Kurobe has made frequent guest appearances in the Ultraman movies and shows. In 2005, he joined the cast of the television series ULTRAMAN MAX (ウルトラマンマックス, Urutoraman Makusu, 2005) in the role of DASH Chief Tomioka. More recently he returned as Hayata in the movies ULTRAMAN MEBIUS & ULTRAMAN BROTHERS (ウルトラマンメビウス&ウルトラ兄弟, Urutoraman Mebiusu ando Urutora Kyoudai, 2006), SUPERIOR 8 ULTRAMAN BROTHERS (大決戦！超ウルトラ８兄弟, Daikessen! Chou Urutora Hachi Kyoudai, 2008) and MEGA MONSTER BATTLE ULTRA GALAXY: THE MOVIE (大怪獣バトル ウルトラ銀河伝説 THE MOVIE, Daikaiju Batoru Urutora Ginga Densetsu THE MOVIE, 2009).
This will be Susumu Kurobe’s first appearance in the United States.
Satoshi “Bin” Furuya
The man is the Ultraman costume was Bin Furuya. Early in his career he had bit parts in a number of Toho films including MOTHRA (モスラ, Mosura, 1961), THE LAST WAR (世界大戦争, Sekai Daisenso, 1961) and KING KONG VS GODZILLA (キングコング対ゴジラ, Kingu Kongu Tai Gojira, 1962). In 1966, he had a few cameo roles and portrayed the monsters Kemur and Ragon in ULTRA Q (ウルトラQ, Urutora Kyuu) before taking on the titular role in ULTRAMAN.
The following year, Bin Fururya had a major role outside the Ultraman suit, portraying Ultra Guard member Amagi in ULTRA SEVEN (ウルトラセブン, Urutorasebun).
Furuya appeared alongside Susumu Kurobe in MONSTER X STRIKES BACK/ ATTACK THE G8 SUMMIT! (ギララの逆襲／洞爺湖サミット危機一発, Girara no Gyakushu / Samitto Kiki Ippatsu!, 2008). In 2009, he made a cameo appearance in MEGA MONSTER BATTLE ULTRA GALAXY: THE MOVIE.
Hiroko Sakurai starred in the very first Ultra series, playing reporter Yuriko Edogawa in ULTRA Q (1966). That same year she played Science Patrol agent Akiko Fuji, the female lead in ULTRAMAN.
Sakurai starred in MANDARA (曼陀羅, 1971) and had a key supporting role in UTAMARO’S WORLD (歌麿 夢と知りせば, Utamaro Yume to Shiriseba, 1977), two acclaimed experimental films by her former ULTRAMAN director, Akio Jissoji.
Like Susumu Kurobe, Hiroko Sakurai returned as a guest star in various Ultra series and movies. In 2005 she was part of the main cast of ULTRAMAN MAX, playing DASH Professor Yukari Yoshinaga. She also played Akiko in the movie SUPERIOR 8 ULTRAMAN BROTHERS (2008). Sakurai also reprised her role as Yuriko Edogawa in the radio drama THE ULTRA Q CLUB (ウルトラQ倶楽部（, Urutora Kyuu Kurabu, 2004).
Ultraman Events and Merchandise
“Friday through Sunday Bin Furuya, Susumu Kurobe and Hiroko Sakurai will be available for an exclusive signing each day in our Executive Room 122,” explained Eliot Brodsky. “There will also be special photo-ops scheduled during the weekend. On Saturday April 13th, Monsterpalooza is proud to present an Ultraman panel with all three cast members moderated by Jim Cirronella from 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM.”
Brodsky also noted that dealers will be offering Ultraman products and collectibles at Monsterpalooza. “Japanese toy company M1 will be on site as well as Anime Jungle located in Los Angeles.”
Eliot Brodsky’s Monsterpalooza 2013 – The Art Of Monsters
April 12th to 14th, 2013
Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel & Convention Center
2500 North Hollywood Way, Burbank, CA 91505-1019
Monsterpalooza tickets will be sold at the door as well as in advance online.
Friday – $20
Saturday – $25
Sunday – $20
Weekend Pass – $50
Visit the official website for additional details and the entire incredible guest list.