Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

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Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby lhb412 » Tue Aug 02, 2016 7:24 pm

I was happy to find out Godzilla is still played by a flesh-and-blood actor, albeit through motion capture.

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He's a really interesting fella: primarily a stage actor and primarily in traditional Kyogen theater - but in his scattered film career he's done things by Ghibli and Kurosawa (he was the young blind man in Ran)!

The ap has the lowdown in a nice little Shin Godzilla write-up:

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/7efd4685 ... d-familiar

Godzilla is not a man wearing a rubber suit, like in the 1954 original. Toho used motion-capture technology based on the movements of Mansai Nomura, an actor in traditional Kyogen theater whose casting was a secret until opening day. The center of gravity is kept low during Kyogen moves, similar to Noh dance, except that Kyogen specializes in comedy. Nomura said he was honored to be chosen for the role, stressing that he hoped to communicate the spiritual and the ghostly in Godzilla. "I am thrilled that the DNA of Kyogen, which has more than 650 years of history, will now be part of the DNA of the pride of Japanese cinema — that life called Godzilla," he said in a statement.
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Re: Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby Benjamin Haines » Tue Aug 02, 2016 7:34 pm

That is awesome!

Miniature effects, CGI, real location footage, digital compositing, and Godzilla is still played by an actor. This is a good, modern mix of different special effects techniques.
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Re: Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby Rody » Wed Aug 03, 2016 6:44 pm

I wonder how much of a "performance" comes through the final animation in the film?
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Re: Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby Dai » Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:14 pm

Rody wrote:I wonder how much of a "performance" comes through the final animation in the film?


This is my concern. He's a fascinating choice to provide a motion capture performance, but there's so much talk of Godzilla basically standing still through many moments in this film. I hope we get to see him add some life to the character, instead of it being a thankless King Ghidorah-style job.
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Re: Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby lhb412 » Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:49 pm

It seems pretty clear from the footage that the stiff, 'ghostly' performance is what Nomura was giving in mocap mode. It's sure to remain devisive, but it's clear that this unnatural movement was a specific aesthetic choice carried out by everyone in the production.
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Re: Mansai Nomura is Godzilla

Postby Dai » Thu Aug 04, 2016 5:21 pm

I believe this is a video of him in action. The sustained tension of the movements and deliberate, flowing pace are quite mesmerising.

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Also, I thought he looked familiar. He starred in Onmyoji about 15 years ago:

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