Yoshiaki Kawajiri (川尻 善昭 Kawajiri Yoshiaki?, born November 18, 1950) is a critically acclaimed writer and director of Japanese animation. He is the creator of titles such as Wicked City, Ninja Scroll, and Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust.
Kawajiri was born on November 18, 1950 and grew up in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan. After he graduated from Yokohama High School in 1968 he began working for a few years as an animator at Mushi Production Animation until it closed in 1972. He then joined Madhouse Studio and in the 1970s was promoted to animation director and finally debuted as a film director with 1984’s Lensman, directing jointly with the more experienced Kazuyuki Hirokawa (Kawajiri also did the character design along with Kazuo Tomizawa). Gaining an interest in darker animation, he next directed The Running Man. Afterwards, he was instructed to make a 35 minute short based on Hideyuki Kikuchi’s novels, which was released as Wicked City. After completing it, however, his… read more
Rintaro, one of the most famous Japanese anime directors, began his career as a seventeen-year-old animator for the Toei Animation Studio. In the early 1960s he began working for Mushi Productions and under the pseudonym Rintaro (his real name is Shigeyuki Hayashi) animated many TV series. Starting in 1971, he began working as a freelancer and became known as one of the best directors of TV anime. In the1980s and 90s he directed more for the big screen. His most important films include Ginga tetsudô Three-Nine (Galaxy Express 999, 1979), Sayônara, ginga tetsudô Surî-Nain: Andromeda shûchakueki (Adieu, Galaxy Express 999, 1981), Kamui no ken (The Blade of Kamui, 1985), Teito monogatari (Doomed Megalopolis, 1991), X (1996), Metoroporisu (Metropolis, 2001) and Yonayona pengin (Yona Yona Penguin, 2009). —Film programmes
Born in Miyagi, Japan, Katsuhiro Otomo grew up with a passion for American and European comics, and for watching American movies. In 1973 he moved to Tokyo to become a comic book artist, making his debut with “A Gun Report,” published in Action magazine. He continued to write for Action, with a regular comic strip and a series of short stories.
A 1977 trip to New York City inspired Otomo to create “Nippon Sayonara,” about a Japanese martial arts professor living in Manhattan. In 1979, Otomo made his first foray into science fiction with the serial “Fireball.” This was followed by another series, “Domu,” which became his first mainstream success.
Otomo eventually turned his sights to film, directing and writing the screenplay for Give Me a Gun Give Me Freedom (1982). He enjoyed much success with Akira (1988), winning a Silver Scream Award at the 1992 Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival for the film which was based on his highly popular comic series of the same name. For Memories… read more