(Photographs by The Tokyo Reporter, October 24, 2015)
TOKYO (TR) – A special event held on Saturday in conjunction with the Tokyo International Film Festival paid tribute to the 50th anniversary of one of Japan’s rubber-suit legends: Gamera.
Before a few hundred spectators, the turtle-like creature waddled down a red carpet laid down in front of JR Shinjuku Station. A veteran of 12 films, the star was showing his age, requiring some assistance from TIFF staff at certain points to navigate the rug.
TIFF will screen four digitally restored versions of Gamera films , including “Gamera — The Guardian of the Universe,” “Gamera 2 — Assault of the Legion” and “Gamera 3 — Revenge of Iris.”
In 1965, the creature made its debut in Daiei Film’s “Daikaiju Gamera” as a response to the Godzilla series from studio Toho. In the film, Gamera runs amok in Japan after emerging from an atomic blast in the Arctic.
Earlier this month, a half-minute trailer for a new Gamera film by Katsuhito Ishii was unveiled. Producers Shinichiro Inoue and Tsuyoshi Kikuchi said that the film could be released as early as next year.