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).
WARNING FROM SPACE (1956)

1. Toru Matoba

的場徹, 1920–1992

Teizo Toshimitsu sculps the original Godzilla suit.

2. Teizo Toshimitsu

利光貞三, 1909–1982

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

3. Michio Mikami

三上陸男, 1935-

MAJIN (1966)

4. Yoshiyuki Kuroda

黒田義之, 1928–2015

5. Nobuo Yajima

矢島信男, 1928–2019

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

佐川和夫, 1939-

THE X FROM OUTER SPACE (1967)

7. Keiji Kawakami

川上景司, 1912–1973

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

8. Akira Watanabe

渡辺明, 1908–1999

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

9. Yasuyuki Inoue

井上泰幸, 1922–2012

Fuminori Ohashi and his specialty: apes.

10. Fuminori Ohashi

大橋史典, 1915–1989

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

11. Nobuyuki Yasumaru

安丸信行, 1935-

Mechagodzilla illustration by Akihiko Iguchi.

12. Akihiko Iguchi

井口昭彦, 1943-

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

13. Toru Suzuki

鈴木昶, 1930–2012

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

14. Koichi Takano

高野宏一, 1935–2008

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

15. Keizo Murase

村瀬継蔵, 1935-

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

16. Fuchimu Shimakura

島倉二千六, 1940-

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

17. Sadao Iizuka

飯塚定雄, 1934-

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

18. Fuyuki Shinada

品田冬樹, 1959-

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

三池敏夫, 1961-

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

20. Izumi Negishi

根岸泉

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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.