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10/03, Official Shinobi Blog.

Sakaguchi Taku and Shimomura Yûji’s Hokuriku Campaign (2)

The Next Morning.
I woke up about 5am, and because I couldn’t sleep anymore I enjoyed a leisurely bath and went to a Western-style restaurant on the second floor to eat a rare breakfast. I swelled my stomach, eating from a smorgasbord-style breakfast setup and read the paper while drinking a cup of coffee. A time-filled morning is nice, you know?

I had event coverage from 10:30 and so I headed for the coverage room. Coffee had been set up for Sakaguchi-san and Shimomura-san, who surely had not eaten breakfast. Would they come soon? During the morning there were two interviews for the northern newspaper Natty Times. Ten minutes before the start of the interview we went knocking on every door in the inn! After dressing, Sakaguchi-san and Shimomura-san came out. Well, we thought they’d do the interview while rubbing sleepy eyes, but…! Sakaguchi and Shimomura made us enjoy the interviews with their right-from-the-start enthusiasm.

Given that they’ve known each other for ten years and have a solid bond of mutual trust, you repeatedly got the sense that these two worked well together. During the interview, they treated us to many stories from their earliest meeting to Shinobi filming secrets. It wasn’t always understandable, but they went through stories of filming the hot action scenes, the contents of location speech, and the inside story of Yasumaru’s secret arts… it became an interview in which we rediscovered a different kind of fun in Shinobi. And they did things like inexcusably giving out news of a new project to the Sakaguchi and Shimomura fans!

After the morning interviews were over, we ate in the hotel. After lunch, we made for Kanazawa Station at a fairly fast pace and took the Thunderbird express to Toyama! By electric train it took a little less than 40 minutes. We got all the way to Toyama Prefecture in the blink of an eye. We had interviews in a Toyama hotel room immediately after our arrival! Sakaguchi-san, Shimomura-san, I’m sorry you didn’t get any break time! There were three interviews for Wide Plus 1, You (doki) Time, and Cinema King that once again came continuously and meant no break. The interviewers were all young women and we proceeded in a bright and comfortable atmosphere.
“They’re like a comedy duo!” Throughout the interview the laughter continued; I began to worry that this kind of laughter might not be good in front of all the cameras (or perhaps I should say, from the back because they weren’t being photographed…)

After a 15 minute break, there was “Honey Bee Seven (Cinema Path)” on FM Toyama, and an interview for a Northern Japan newspaper after that.

We left the hotel and in about 15 minutes arrived at Favore Tôhô. Inside the theater was nothing but Shinobi.

And the staff who came to meet us were all wearing identical homemade Shinobi t-shirts! So touching!

In the waiting room there was once again lots of signing. Using a whiteboard in the waiting room as a greeting board for theater guests, the staff had all written warm messages for Sakaguchi-san and Shimomura-san! Furthermore, on the board there were replies to the staff messages on the occasions of the Bôkoku no aegis campaign and the 69 promotion from Katsuji Ryô-san and Tsumabuki Satoshi-san (respectively) that hadn’t been erased and still remained. Sakaguchi-san, who saw this, took a pen in his hand, and I thought, “oh, he’s going to reply,” but what! He wrote his answer not on the whiteboard, but on a poster for Use it beautifully… (my memory is vague)… A whiteboard is easy to erase, but in writing it on paper it won’t be erased!

Hey folks at Favore Tôhô, did you find Sakaguchi-san’s reply?

While doing this and that, it was also onstage greeting time! Sakaguchi-san and Shimomura-san went onstage at a packed location! Standing before the assembly, Sakaguchi-san briefly commented, noting the seemingly extreme kindness of Toyama Prefectural citizens to people visiting the area, “Perhaps I should say that I was born on the border of Toyama and Ishikawa prefectures.”

The onstage greeting ended amidst huge applause. After that we took a commemorative photo of the staff wearing the Shinobi T-shirts, and Sakaguchi-san made the delightful proposal of autographing the shirts! Signing the back of each and every staff member’s T-shirt, the visit to Favore Tôhô ended and Sakaguchi-san, Shimomura-san, and the rest of the staff all made their way back.

Sakaguchi-san, who was kept up late at night, and Shimomura-san, who wasn’t well and who didn’t even get a little rest, both handled the hard schedule well—seriously, guys, thanks!

To everyone who came to the locations to see Shinobi and to the theater staff members—thank you all so very much!

The fight between Yashamaru and Koshiro is a must-see! Please enjoy it over and over again!


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