"There is so much writing in English on Japanese cinema that can't be accepted at face value — not because the writers are careless, but because the differences in culture and language are just too intricate. When I see August Ragone's name on a piece of writing, it gives me permission to place my faith in it completely. Among Japanese fantasy film historians, he's the best working in English." —Tim Lucas, Video Watchdog


Thursday, August 30, 2012

YET ANOTHER 15 MINUTES OF "MST3K" FAME
Vol. XXIV: Fugitive Aliens & Mighty Jacks



Last April, while my cohorts and I were handling Haruo Nakajima's appearance at the Monsterpalooza convention in beautiful downtown Burbank, I was tapped by Shout! Factory to shoot an interview for their MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 box set containing, arguably, the best (and most infamous) episodes of the seires: Gamera. After we finished the coverage for Vol. XXI, Special Features Producer Jordan Fields revealed that they had cleared the rights for Sandy Frank's TIME OF THE APES, MIGHTY JACK, FUGITIVE ALIEN, and STAR FORCE ("Fugitive Alien II"), based on the respective television series from Tsuburaya Producitons, and asked if I had anything to say about them. Well, since I love this stuff, I did.

Released December 6, 2011, MST3K: Vol. XXII contained TIME OF THE APES, MIGHTY JACK, THE VIOLENT YEARS, and THE BRUTE MAN. I provided on-screen introductions for TIME OF THE APES and MIGHTY JACK. The former was a 26-episode take on the popular PLANET OF THE APES film series, ARMY OF THE APES (1974), and the latter was an hour-long, 13-episode science fiction-tinged espionage drama, MIGHTY JACK (1968). Of course, the condensation of 26-episodes into a 97-minute film, would make even this juvenile adventure series even more confounding — especially with Sandy Frank's excruciating dubbing — while MIGHTY JACK comes across as a poor man's WHAT'S UP TIGER LILY?, making it prime MST3K fodder.

The latest, MST3K Vol. XXIV, released July 31, 2012, features the two Sandy Frank films culled from the 24-episode series, STAR WOLF (1979), based on Edmund Hamilton's pulp sci-fi adventure, produced in the wake of STAR WARS: FUGITIVE ALIEN and STAR FORCE. Also included in this set are THE SWORD AND THE DRAGON and SAMSON VS. THE VAMPIRE WOMEN. For FUGITIVE ALIEN, I provide the on-screen introduction to kick off the extras for this set, which includes three "MST Hour Wraps" with Mike Nelson as Jack Perkins, "You Asked For It: Sandy Frank Speaks!", two shorts ("Snow Thrills" and "A Date With Your Family"), "Lucha Gringo: K. Gordon Murray Meets Santo", a TV Spot for SAMSON VS. THE VAMPIRE WOMEN, and "Life After "MST3K": Frank Conniff".

It was a fun morning providing some background on these television series, to put them into context for the legion of MSTies and the uninitiated, and it was an honor to be involved with Shout! Factory's continuing stellar presentations of MST3K. It would be a pleasure to do it again if they eventually clear the rights to release Toei's PRINCE OF SPACE, INVASION OF THE NEPTUNE MEN, and LEGEND OF THE DINOSAURS. I'd love to talk about the Phantom of Krankor, if you're reading this, Jordan...

Friday, August 24, 2012

SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO: 2199 Chapter 3
New Trailer, Isao Sasaki Returns, and More!

懐かしい!ささきいさおの『宇宙戦艦ヤマト2199第3章PV』



The official website, Yamato Crew, has just been updated with a cornucopia of news on the ongoing SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO: 2199 series, including the brand-new trailer for Chapter 3, opening in Japanese cinemas on October 13th (click here for a higher-res version hosted on Yamato Crew). While it is no news that the original vocalist, Isao Sasaki, returned to the studio to record fresh arrangements of the late Hiroshi Miyagawa's theme song, and the original ending theme song, "The Scarlet Scarf" (under the baton of the composer's son, Akira), it is news that the classic romantic tune will now be the official Ending Theme for Chapter 3 (episodes 7-10)!

Previously, it was stated that this new recording would only be used as an "Insert Song" (perhaps heard in a few episodes, either vocal or instrumental), so this is great news for long-time Yamato fans. The new version of "The Scarlet Scarf" can be heard in the brilliant trailer for Chapter 3 (posted and linked above, features an actual ending, as the original simply faded out), which carries the preview solely with Sasaki's signature crooner — with full emotional punch for those of us who grew up with Yamato!

Speaking of Yamato music, an epic concert has been announced for this coming November 10th, entitled "Yamato Symphonic Band: Great Ceremony of 2012". Akira Miyagawa, at the baton, will. conduct the Osaka Municipal Symphonic Band, and the Toke Civic Wind Orchestra, for two full performances featuring the music of YAMATO: 2199. Vocalists will include the aforementioned Isao Sasaki, Aira Yuki, and Aki Misato, singing their respective songs for YAMATO: 2199. According to the press release:

This music, referred to by fans as the "Miyagawa Sound", should be handed down from generation to generation. And now, the son of Miyagawa, Akira Miyagawa, has inherited this sound from the past, and will be sitting at the piano, accompanied by his "Yamato Symphonic Band". Now, leading the past into the present with "emotion" and "music", this new Miyagawa Sound will resound the name "Yamato" throughout the galaxy!

In addition to the full performance, audiences will be treated to a special bonus: a world-premiere screening of Episode 11 of YAMATO: 2199! Produced by Bandai-Namco Live Creative and Voyager Entertainment, the "Yamato Symphonic Band: Great Ceremony of 2012" will be held at the amazing Maihama Amphitheatre, located near the Tokyo Disney Resort.

In even more music news, the first full Original Soundtrack album for YAMATO: 2199 has been announced for release this coming November 7th, featuring Akira Miyagawa's re-recordings of his father's original score, plus his new cues, all heard in the new series. While there are no other details at press time, the CD will retail for ¥3,000, and will be the first in a series from Lantis and Bandai Visual. Speaking of Yamato soundtracks, a two-CD set of music from the Director's Cut of SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO: RESURRECTION, featuring previously-released tracks, as heard in the re-release of the 2009 feature film (soon to be issued on DVD and BD in the US from Funimation) is now available from Columbia Records (formerly Nippon Columbia), featuring 47 tracks, ¥3,360.

Of course, all of this is in addition to the current pair of CD singles for the songs of YAMATO: 2199 from Lantis, retailing for ¥1,200 each, and the 24bit 96kHz, Blu-spec CD reissue series of the 30 original Yamato soundtrack albums, "Yamato Almanac", which just launched this past July, to be released over a two-year period, and will retail for ¥2,625 each.

With the premiere of Chapter 3: "The Endless Voyage", the film will be playing in two additional cinemas to meet with the demand for YAMATO: 2199, thus bringing the total number of nationwide theaters up to twelve: MOVIX Kameari in Tokyo and the Osaka Station City Cinema in Osaka. Meanwhile, on Opening Day, the Shinjuku Piccadilly Theater will be hosting their third "Yamatalk Night", with a "Gamilas Invasion": On hand will be voice actors Koichi Yamadera (Lord Aberto Dessler) and Yosuke Akimoto (Vice Commander Redoff Hiss). Yamadera has an extensive resume, and is perhaps most well-known as "Spike Spiegel" from COWBOY BEBOP (1998) and "Ryoji Kaji" in NEON GENESIS EVANGELION (1995).

Veteran Akimoto has enjoyed a long and esteemed career with roles such as Siegel Clyne in MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM SEED (2003) and Lord Alberto in GIANT ROBO: THE ANIMATION (1993). Before his Anime  career, Akimoto was an on-screen actor, who was featured in several tokusatsu series: The Dark Scientist who creates Hakaida in Episodes 36 & 38 of KIKAIDA (1972), Genshiro Shiranui in Episodes 1, 2 & 4 of IRON KING (1972), Dr. Iwamura in Episodes 33 & 34 of SUPER ROBOT: RED BARON (1973), and many more. The two VAs will be joined on stage by Supervising Director Yutaka Izubuchi. Times for this live talk before the screening of Chapter 3, are to be announced.

Stay tuned to this blog and the official Star Blazers website for more news and information on SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO: 2199 as they develop — and soon, we'll be off to outer space, like we never have before! Again.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

PREVIEW: "SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE"!
Toei Studios Unveils First Full-Length Trailer

映画『宇宙刑事ギャバン THE MOVIE』予告編



As I reported in my August 14th update, SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE: There's a New Sheriff in Town on October 20th, hot on the heels of the success of GOKAIGER VS. GAVAN, which opened this past January, Toei is producing a follow-up feature film to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the "Space Sheriff" series: GAVAN, SHARIVAN, and SHAIDER (which became popular throughout the world, and are still beloved today). This is the first full-length trailer, featuring a decidedly more straight-jawed style, compared to those of the current — and more light-hearted — Super Sentai and Kamen Rider films and television shows. The trailer also reveals the characters, villains, and the return of Gavan's compatriots, Sharivan and Shaider (now played by younger actors). The Osamu Kaneda-directed film will open in Japanese cinemas on October 20th.



"Goodbye tears, hello courage! Space Sheriff Gavan!"

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

GOKE, GUILALA, & LIVING SKELETONS, OH MY!
Criterion Unleashes the "Shockiku Horror" Box

出た!「松竹SF/ホラー」DVDボックスはアメリカに来る!



Finally, after years of waiting — far too long — a four odd-ball genre films made by Shochiku Studios in the late 1960s, are finally seeing the light of day on home video in North America! And I'm glad it's Criterion! For over a decade, Janus Films/Criterion has held the rights to a large number of obscure, weird, and unknown Japanese films in it's coffers, and only recently began making some of them available on DVD through it's Eclipse budget label, but also for view on their Criterion Collection page hosted over the streaming video service, Hulu. And now, at last, all four are coming to DVD! On November 20th, Eclipse Series 37: "When Horror Came to Shochiku", will hit store shelves — a set containing all four of the studio's gritty, crazed, and disparate science fiction, horror, and fantasy films from the late 1960s: THE X FROM OUTER SPACE, GOKE, BODYSNATCHER FROM HELL, THE LIVING SKELETON, and GENOCIDE — with excellent liner notes by the redoubtable Chuck Stephens — this is an epic box set that cannot be missed!



Shochiku threw its hat into the genre film ring during a pop cultural convergence in Japan that the media branded, “The Monster Boom” of 1966 — kicked off by Tsuburaya Productions' hit television series, ULTRA Q. Every movie studio and television network was rushing to get a piece of the Monster Boom pie, and more monsters began filling the screens of Japanese cinemas nationwide, with films such as Shigeo Tanaka’s GAMERA VS. BARUGON (Gamera tai Barugon), Hajime Sato’s TERROR BENEATH THE SEA (Kaitei Daisenso), Ishiro Honda’s THE WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS (Sanda tai Gaira), Jun Fukuda’s GODZILLA VS. THE SEA MONSTER (Nankai-no Daiketto), THE MAGIC SERPENT, and all three DAIMAJIN films — it seemed that all of Japan was deep in Monster Mania. ULTRAMAN premiered on July 17, 1966, and dominated the airwaves along with P-Productions' THE SPACE GIANTS (Maguma Taishi), and Toei TV Productions’ LIL’DEVIL (Akuma-kun). Before this, it was Toho Studio's territory — now, the flood gates were opened.



With the dawn of New Year’s 1967, the Monster Boom of the previous year had not yet shown any signs of slowing: ULTRAMAN’s ratings were still skyrocketing, and Godzilla, Gamera, Gappa, Guilala, and others, smashed their way across cinema screens, while television networks rushed to have their own small screen versions, followed by publishers and toy makers who jumped happily into ground zero. Everywhere you looked there were monsters, monsters, and more monsters — while children, and adults alike, couldn’t get enough. Daiei Studios saw the lighted fuse first, and started ahead of the game with Noriaki Yuasa's GAMERA (Daikaiju Gamera, 1965), which launched not only a series starring the colossal chelonian, but two trilogies about stone idols coming to life, and the shenanigans of native goblins or Yokai. Daiei also had a long history of Kaidan or Ghost Story films, even though most studios made Kaidan, a traditional genre, they weren't necessarily considered fantasy films. Nikkatsu Studios, mostly known for it's modern action films, produced Haruyasu Noguchi's GAPPA, THE TRIPHIBIAN MONSTER (Daikyoju Gappa); released directly to the airwaves by American International Television as "Monster from a Prehistoric Planet".



Shochiku couldn't pass up the Monster Boom and went, head-first, into a series of wild and delirious films — some of which are quite unfamiliar to those outside of Japan, simply because they received spotty releases, or none at all. The best known of these films, Kazui Nihonmatsu's THE X FROM OUTER SPACE (Uchu Daikaiju Girara, 1967), was released directly to television by AIP-TV, where it melted the brains of young Japanese Monster freaks for nearly two decades. The film follows the familiar pattern of the giant monster movie — an interplanetary spacecraft on a routine mission, unwittingly brings back a spore to the Earth, which grows into a titanic, radiation-absorbing beastie, who goes on a path of destruction to feed its insatiable appetite for atomic materials. The resultant daikaiju is a sight to behold — best described as a cross between Godzilla and a plucked chicken — "Guilala" (christened in a naming contest run in a children's magazine), steals the show. Most viewers find the creature's design ludicrous, but I personally find him sublime. Add a teenaged American model-cum-actress, Peggy Neal, as an Astrophysicist (!), and Eiji Okada, star of Alain Resnais's HIROSHIMA MON AMOR (1959), and you have a real wackadoo of picture — and I'm not kidding, it's pure joy!



What can I say about Hajime Sato's GOKE, BODYSNATCHER FROM HELL (Kyuketsu Gokemidoro, 1968)? Well, if you thought THE X FROM OUTER SPACE was crazy — wait until you see this picture (which was visually referenced by Quentin Tarantino in KILL BILL VOL. 1)! A rash of flying saucer sightings portend impending doom for our world. An airliner is forced to crash-land in a remote area, after colliding with a massive flock of birds, and soon its passengers find themselves face-to-face with an alien being that desires to possess their bodies and souls — and perhaps take over the entire human race. Criterion heralds, "Filled with creatively repulsive make-up effects — including a very invasive bloblike life-form — GOKE, BODYSNATCHER FROM HELL is a pulpy, apocalyptic gross-out." Each of the passengers carries their own baggage — the corrupt politician, the desperate criminal, a twisted psychiatrist, a woman on the verge, etc. — playing out like Sato's condemnation of mankind, as each of them fall victim to the extraterrestrial menace. This is really outre filmmaking that is 1/4 ZERO HOUR (1957) + 1/4 INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1956) + 1/4 MATANGO (1963) + 1/4 INVADERS FROM MARS (1953), all adding up to make GOKE a truly bizarre and otherworldly viewing experience — trust me.



Oh, GENOCIDE (Konchu Daisenso, 1968)... How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Kazuhi Nihomatsu returns after THE X FROM OUTER SPACE with a deliriously sleazy and nihilistic science fiction-horror-doomsday thriller, starring the respected Yusuke Kawazu (CRUEL STORY OF YOUTH). En route to a mission over Vietnam, a nuclear-armed US Bomber is mysteriously downed over a small Japanese island. When a small American search party arrives to retrieve the bomb, they come face-to-face with a plot to destroy all of mankind — employing mutant, killer insects! The extent of their mutation, and who created them, would spoil the fun of the "I-didn't-see-that-one-coming" revelation! With a climax that is, by any definition, big and terrible, GENOCIDE (aka WAR OF THE INSECTS) is resplendent with throughly unlikeable characters; everyone one of them is either mad, twisted, perverse, or throughly disgusting — my kind of picture! As the search for the ticking bomb (I did mention that, didn't I?) presses on, the claustrophobic atmosphere of this humid and oppressive island, is all the more suffocating, in sweaty, and over-saturated Eastmancolor. If I say any more (and I know you can easily look up spoiler-filled reviews), it would simply ruin experiencing the lurid, trashy wonders of GENOCIDE for yourself. And then there's Chico Roland. Yes, it's that good.



Now, we come to the real jewel among the gems of this set, an atmospheric tale of supernatural revenge from briny deep, Norio Matsuo's THE LIVING SKELETON (Kyuketsu Dokoro-sen, 1968)! As a kid in the '70s, I read about this film in the pages of Greg Shoemaker's Japanese Fantasy Film Journal and Dennis Gifford's book, A Pictorial History Of Horror Movies, but I had to wait until the film surfaced on Laserdisc in the early '90s (properly letterboxed to highlight Masayuki Kato's effective black-and-white cinematography). And, I was not disappointed — and neither should you. The Ryu-Oh Maru, a freighter carrying a valuable cache of gold is raided, and vanishes without a trace. Three years later, the sister of one of the victims, now bereft of family, is living under the care of the kindly Catholic Priest, in a quiet seaside church. Not far away, five of the murderous pirates are living their lives with the ill-gotten gains, until one day, when a fog-enshrouded Ryu-Oh Maru drifts into view... Soon, everyone's lives begin to unravel, as the ship beckons for its pound of flesh. Starring the haunting Kikko Matsuoka (BUSHIDO: CRUEL CODE OF THE SAMURAI), THE LIVING SKELETON draws from numerous sources, from Euro Horror to Kaidan Eiga, and just a dash of Krimi, topped with an impressive ending that is far more devastating than the previous outtings. In the words of the late, great Bob Wilkins, "I think you're going to like it."



This essential, must-have DVD Box Set, Eclipse Series 37: "When Horror Came to Shochiku" (there is no Blu-ray release scheduled), will contain each film on individual discs with it own case (as previous Eclipse releases), and is retailing for $59.95 — or only $47.96 from the online Criterion Store. While there are no special features to speak of, aside from Chuck Stephen's liner notes booklet, there is also no word at press time whether the THE X FROM OUTER SPACE, GOKE, or GENOCIDE will feature their respective English Dubbed tracks (it's unclear if LIVING SKELETON was ever dubbed). All four films are expected to be presented in their original Japanese language with English Subtitles. Hey, after all this time, I'm just glad that we're going to be exposed to these truly unique and insane genre entries — hammering home that there's far more to the Japanese Fantasy Film than Godzilla. Really, there is.

Special thanks to Chuck Stephens

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

"SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE"
There's a New Sheriff in Town on October 20th!

『宇宙刑事ギャバンTHE MOVIE』にシャリバンとシャイダー参戦決定!

Toei's latest poster featuring Space Sheriffs Sharivan and Shaider!

When it comes to currents in Japanese Superhero productions, I’m usually just a little let down, as I’m far more accustomed to the productions of the ‘60s-’80s, which was — as far as I’m concerned — the best period in the history of the genre, due to the high-level of writing, sheer imagination, unparalleled music, rugged leads, break-neck fight choreography, stupefying stunts, and unbridiled violence. It was a Golden Age. For over a decade, Toei has been trying to revive their “Space Sheriff” franchise (the first of which was simply redressed as KAMEN RIDER RYUKI), and with the upcoming second appearance of the original Gavan, this is a production that just might be worth anticipating.

There's a new Space Sheriff in town: Yuma Ishigaki is Gavan Type-G!

With 2012 heralding the 30th Anniversary of the original SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN, it came as no surprise that Toei Studios announced a new movie featuring the character, especially after his hit return in GOKAIGER VS. GAVAN: THE MOVIE, back in January. In the new film, SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE, Kenji Ohba (Kill Bill Vol. 1) returns to Earth as “Ichijoji Retsu”, to stop a new threat from original nemeses of the Makku Cosmic Crime Syndicate. While on Earth, Retsu will hand over his mantle as “Space Sheriff Gavan” to his young replacement, “Geki Jumonji”, played by Yuma Ishigaki (13 Assassins) — this Gavan II (designated "Type G") features blue eyes, as the original has red. While story of this film has been circulating for several weeks, even bigger news broke just hours ago in Japan: Gavan will be joined by his fellow Space Sheriffs, Sharivan and Shaider, from their respective series — and I've got some of the first detailed information in English, right here — long time fans are sure to be awaiting this new adventure.


The inspiration for Robocop: Space Sheriff Gavan!

During the original 1982-85 run of “Metal Hero” series, tokusatsu (visual effects) productions were enjoying renewed popularity in the despite the Anime Boom, and fueling that popularity were the mind-blowing stunt scenes by Sonny Chiba’s Japan Action Club; JAC also being at the height of their fame as well with protégés such as Hiroyuki Sanada (The Last Samurai), one of Japan’s biggest stars at the time. Another JAC alumni, Hiroshi Watari (Zebraman) went on to appear as “Den Iga” in the follow-up to GAVAN, SPACE SHERIFF SHARIVAN (1983-84), and appeared in several other series, including DIMENSION WARRIOR: SPEILBAN (1986-87). Hiroshi Tsuburaya (Ultraman Gaia), the grandson of the legendary effects wizard, was cast as “Dai Sawamura”, aka SPACE SHERIFF SHAIDER (1984-85). While the “Metal Hero” genre continued with MONSTER HUNTER: JUSPION (1985-86), the “Space Sheriff” series came to an end. Interestingly, Gavan influenced Rob Bottin’s design of the original ROBOCOP. I kid you not (but that's another story for another time).


Yukari Taki plays the new Gavan's love interest, Itsuki Kawai.

In this new production, younger actors, complimenting Ishigaki’s new Gavan, will wield the Laser Blades of Sharivan and Shaider. And Toei’s casting seems to be “deliberate”, according to the Japanese website, Cinema Today: Donning Sharivan’s crimson armor as “Kai Hyoga” will be Riki Miura, better known as Go Fukami/Geki Violet in GEKIRANGER (2007-08), while the blue armor of Shaider will be worn by “Shu Karasuma”, played by Hiroaki Iwanaga, who appeared as Akira Date/Kamen Rider Birth in KAMEN RIDER OOO (2010-11). Also joining the cast: Takuya Nagaoka (Brass Knuckle Boys) as "Toya Okuma", Jumonji’s childhood friend. Yukari Taki (Norwegian Wood) plays another childhood friend, and love interest, "Itsuki Kawai", a member of the Space Astrophysics Research and Development organization (SARD).


Ex-AV actress, Honoka, plays Commander Com's Secretary, Elena.

Former AV actress, Honoka (Akibaranger) is playing “Secretary Elena”, while Suzuka Morita (Shinkenger) plays the new Gavan’s partner, “Sherry”. One of the new members of Makku will be the witch, “Kiru”, played by Japan Action Enterprises’ star stunt actress, Sanae Hitomi (Wild 7). Obligatory comic relief will be provided by funnyman, Ijiri Okada (The World Sinks Except Japan) as "Iwamoto", Section Chief of SARD. Surprisingly, one of the roles being reprised from the original GAVAN series will be that of “Commander Kom”, played by Toshiaki Nishizawa — better known to American fans as “Secretary-General Kubota” from GODZILLA VS. GIGAN (1972). While I’m sure that there will be some other familiar faces popping up in this new film, it’s unknown at this time whether Hiroshi Watari will appear — we can only hope — or if they’re will be any tribute to the late Hiroshi Tsuburaya.


Suzuka Morita as the new female Space Sheriff, Sherry!

Helming SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE will be long time stunt actor and stunt choreographer, Osamu Kaneda (KIKAIDA), who began directing with the 1993 series, SPECIAL INVESTIGATION ROBO: JANPERSON. Kaneda has been responsible for all of the recent KAMEN RIDER movies, including KAMEN RIDER X SUPER SENTAI: SUPERHERO WARS (2012). Author and writer, Yuji Kobayashi, whose credits include GARO (2005-06) and ULTRAMAN MOEBIUS (2006-07), is providing the screenplay. Composer Kosuke Yamashita (Linda, Linda, Linda), whose tokusatsu credits include MAGIRANGER (2004-05) and GOKAIGER (2011-12), is penning the score, which will feature signature GAVAN music from the legendary Michiaki “Chumei” Watanabe. Rumor has it that the famed vocalist, Akira Kushida, will be recording a new version of the original theme song — that should be amazing.  


Sanae Hitomi of Japan Action Enterprises plays the evil Kiru!

Hiroshi Butsuda (The Men of the Yamato) will be handling the Visual Effects, which bodes well for this production. And last, but not least, action choreography is being supervised by Toshihiro Okura, a former suit actor with a resume a mile long, that not only includes Super Sentai and Kamen Rider credits, but playing Anguirus, Ebirah, and Keizer Ghidorah in GODZILLA FINAL WARS (2004). This is Okura's first film as an Action Director. There is also another rumor is brewing that, if successful, this may launch a whole new series of "Space Sheriff" movies and television series. SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN: THE MOVIE opens in Japanese cinemas nationwide on October 20, 2012 — I’m crossing my fingers, but not holding my breath. To quote the new poster's tagline: "When danger threatens the galaxy, a Space Sheriff shall rise!"



C’mon, Gavan! Don’t let us down!