Monday, February 25, 2008

Video: Seiyuus Visit "true tears" Real-Life Setting in Toyama

Here's a video from YouTube showing the director and the main female seiyuu from true tears visiting the real-life setting of the anime, in Toyama Prefecture.

The video shows locations that are part of the anime -- the shopping mall, the shop where Ai-chan works, Shinichirou's house, the snowy streets and houses, etc.

Iguchi Yuka (Ai) says she was surprised and moved by seeing how like the anime the shop was. In real life it sells takoyaki (squid balls). In the anime it sells imagawayaki (sweet bean waffles). Director Nishimura Junji says they liked the feeling of pride in Toyama. The fact that the animation company has its headquarters there might also have helped.

In the video, Iguchi Yuka (Ai) is wearing all pale colors and has short, straight hair. Takagaki Ayahi (Noe) is wearing jeans and a dark jacket and has a dark face and very long ears. Nazuka Kaori (Hiromi) is tall, wears a dark jacket and light skirt, and has bobbed hair. Director Nishimura Junji is balding, with a beard and mustache. The video also shows the actual proprietor of the takoyaki shop and a representative of the mall.

Toyama is a prefecture (= state, province) on the west coast of Japan. The area gets a lot of snow, especially this winter. No wonder Hiromi is looking for "a town where it doesn't snow."

Here, from the true tears staff blog entry for last Friday, is a picture of Iguchi Yuka behind the counter of the takoyaki shop. The "customers" are Nazuka Kaori (left) and Takagaki Ayahi.

The animation company that is making true tears, P.A. Works (Progressive Animation Works) actually has its main headquarters at Nanto, in Toyama. Nanto is a district municipality taking in a number of towns and the land between them. The company also has offices in Tokyo, where the voice recording was done.

The video says that P.A. Works has assembled "young creators" from all over Japan to work in this quite out-of-the-way town. Since its founding in the early 1990s, P.A. Works has done subcontracts, mainly for Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell, Tsubasa Chronicle, Seirei no Moribito). This is the first full anime it has produced itself.

The video is a TV news feature, probably from Toyama television.


tik said...

(Well my first post here)

Thanks for the video, it's always interesting to compare the the real setting with the anime, and I am always amazed by how great some of the anime studios at porting those real world setting into anime with a high degree of accuracy.

The more I watch True Tears, the more I'm captivated by the beautiful scenery of Toyama, especially her coastline. I wish I could visit there one day haha.

Anyway, the owner of this blog also had some field trip in Toyama.

Also, I am not sure if this has been posted on this blog before but there is a video on nico (not sure if there's a YouTube ver though) about P.A. Works and to a lesser extend, Toyama.

I guess it's from the same TV station as the one you posted. It does seem to me that the station aired these 2 videos are some local Toyama station since the narrator said something like "our familiar scenery" at 1.47min of the seiyuu video you posted, when talking about the coastline etc. But my Japanese is extremely limited so I may have misunderstood the whole thing.

hashihime said...

@tik -- Thanks for the links! That comment from the broadcaster was one of the reasons it seemed to me it was probably a local show, too.

On the nico link, just reading the subtitles, they say that they have a staff of 35 (I think that was the number) with an average age of 24. It said Nanto was a nice place to live and the company had a dorm for $150 a month, with free dinners for a year.

The speed the senior woman was working at was truly impressive, and the main interviewee seemed like a solid but tough guy. I think he said this was a make-or-break year for the company. Looks like "make" to me, with people comparing it to KyoAni -- another "regional" studio.