The Unsung Heroes of Japanese Special Effects Cinema

Special effects luminary Eiji Tsuburaya inspects a massive miniature of the legendary Yamato for the war film ATTACK SQUADRON (1963).
The tokusatsu process explained in GODZILLA (1977) by Julian May (Ian Thorne).

1. Toru Matoba

Teizo Toshimitsu sculps the original Godzilla suit.

2. Teizo Toshimitsu

THE SUPER INFRA-MAN (1975) which featured art direction and monster designs by Michio Mikami.

3. Michio Mikami

MAJIN (1966)

4. Yoshiyuki Kuroda

5. Nobuo Yajima

Nobuo Yajima on the set of 1994’s KAMEN RIDER J with manga and tokusatsu legend Shotaro Ishinomori.
Kazuo Sagawa sits behind the Polar-Borer miniature from THE LAST DINOSAUR (1977) with suit builder Tomoo Haraguchi.

6. Kazuo Sagawa


7. Keiji Kawakami

Rodan designs by Akira Watanabe and a maquette sculpted by Teizo Toshimitsu.

8. Akira Watanabe

A Japanese art book dedicated to Yasuyuki Inoue’s work.

9. Yasuyuki Inoue

Fuminori Ohashi and his specialty: apes.

10. Fuminori Ohashi

Nobuyuki Yasumaru sculpts Jet Jaguar’s head for GODZILLA VS. MEGALON (1973).

11. Nobuyuki Yasumaru

Mechagodzilla illustration by Akihiko Iguchi.

12. Akihiko Iguchi

The Taiwanese production HEROES OF THE EASTERN SKIES (1977) which a Japanese FX crew led by Toru Suzuki worked on.

13. Toru Suzuki

On the set of ULTRA Q, from left to right: Kazuo Sagawa, Koichi Takano, Hajime Tsuburaya, Tokoku Shishikura and Keiji Kawakami.

14. Koichi Takano

Keizo Murase with the titular monster costume from VARAN (1958).

15. Keizo Murase

Various backdrops painted by Fuchimu Shimakura in INVASION OF ASTRO-MONSTER (1965), DESTROY ALL MONSTERS (1968) and BYE BYE JUPITER (1984).

16. Fuchimu Shimakura

Various elements in DOGORA, GHIDORAH, THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER (both 1964) and ULTRAMAN (1966) animated by Sadao Iizuka.

17. Sadao Iizuka

The monstrously large final form Biollante suit from GODZILLA VS. BIOLLANTE (1989), one of Fuyuki Shinada’s first major jobs.

18. Fuyuki Shinada

Art director Toshio Miike touches up one of his miniature worlds in 2001’s GODZILLA, MOTHRA AND KING GHIDORAH: GIANT MONSTERS ALL-OUT ATTACK.

19. Toshio Miike

An impressive explosion created by master engineer Izumi Negishi in GAMERA 2: ATTACK OF LEGION (1996).

20. Izumi Negishi




Jules L. Carrozza (1986-) is a film director, video editor, writer, graphic designer and general crazy person.

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J.L. Carrozza

J.L. Carrozza

Jules L. Carrozza (1986-) is a film director, video editor, writer, graphic designer and general crazy person.

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