"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

Friday, March 7, 2014

"Ultra Hawaii" Promotes Vacations for Japanese


Shaka Taro and Jessica Michibata at launch event. Tokyo Pop Online

TOKYO: On March 6th, Ultraman Taro appeared on stage with Jessica Michibata, a Argentine-Japanese fashion model, to promote the launch of the "Ultra Hawaii" campaign of travel packages to the five islands — with a decidedly superheroic sense — by the Hawai‘i Tourism Japan Authority, and with the cooperation of twelve major travel companies. The campaign features Ultraman Taro, and his parents, Father of Ultra and Mother of Ultra, as well as Ultra Monsters, Baltan and Pygmon, acting as tourists and extolling the beauty and romance of Hawai'i.

This is Ultra Hawaii promotion video. ©Tsuburaya Productions

"Ultra Hawaii" has been organized to bring more tourism to the islands, as well as to get more Japanese to take their vacations in these special roadshow packages aimed at families, as well as couples who want to have a second honeymoon, renew their marriage vows, or celebrate wedding anniversaries. The Hawai‘i Tourism Japan Authority was established in January of last year, and is launching these special "Ultra Hawaii" packages starting in April 2014. A full-blown website went online March 5th, featuring the famous Tsuburaya Productions' characters.

Waikiki Surf Lesson in O'ahu. ©Tsuburaya Productions

The website not only features photos of the Ultra Family enjoying the beauty of Hawai'i, but also a series of humorous videos of the Ultra Family (as well as Baltan and Pygmon) dramatizing what you can also do on one's dream vacation to the six major islands: O'ahu, Hawai'i, Maui, Kaua'i, Lānaʻi, and Molokaʻi — each island available in separate and roadshow packages. The great Ultra Family and Ultra Monster suits were created by master monster maker Fuyuki Shinada (GMK: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack).

Shore Bird Restaurant & Beach Bar. ©Tsuburaya Productions

Interestingly, the 1974 Ultra Series, ULTRAMAN LEO, is currently airing ever Friday night in Hawai'i on Honolulu's KIKU-20 (and ULTRA SEVEN was broadcast on KHON-2 back in 1975). Please visit the "Ultra Hawaii" website to see the great photos, check out the promotion videos, and download some beautiful desktop and screen savers — and join them on Facebook (Japanese only) — Mahalo, Ultraman!

Poolside Yoga at the Embassy Suites. ©Tsuburaya Productions


Stuart K. Hayashi said...

Thank you for writing about this. I live in Hawaii but did not know about it.

I must admit I don't approve of tax money being spent for this purpose. But as a lifelong kaiju fan, I find this very interesting news. :-)

ultramanj said...

Fantastic, I am ready to go now... I have to get one of those suits.