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Mitsuo Fukuda (福田 己津央, Fukuda Mitsuo, 福田 満夫 prior to 1990) (born 1960) is the director of Future GPX Cyber Formula, Gear Fighter Dendoh, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED and Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny.

Anime directed by Fukuda that have won the Animage Anime Grand Prix award have been Future GPX Cyber Formula in 1991, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED in 2002, and Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny in 2004 and 2005.

Career

Fukuda joined Sunrise in 1979. He was one of the creators of the Brave series of shows and likely would have directed the ninth Brave series, Baan Gaan, had it been fully produced.[citation needed] He was a core planning and production staffer on Exkaiser, Fighbird, and Da Garn, before leaving to focus on Cyber Formula. After the ending of Cyber Formula, he worked on the widely praised GEAR Fighter Dendoh series, and then work on Gundam SEED in the year following. He once promised a new Cyber Formula series in 2007[citation needed], but this production seems to be put on the backburner in favor of the Gundam SEED movie.[citation needed] He has also worked on Victory Gundam and Metal Armor Dragonar in a storyboard capacity, and likely worked on other Sunrise franchises in a more subordinate role.

Fukuda has been credited with the revival of Gundam's popularity with Mobile Suit Gundam SEED after two straight commercial failures in After War Gundam X and Turn A Gundam. In particular, these shows did not provide Bandai with popular lines of model kits to sell.[citation needed] Mitsuo Fukuda, by contrast, declared that successful lines of model kit merchandise were one of his personal goals for the SEED franchise in his early interviews in Newtype.[citation needed] Japanese television shows have referred to this resurgence in merchandise popularity as the "Second Gundam Boom", and compared it to the "First Gundam Boom" of the early 80's from the release of the original Mobile Suit Gundam movies.[citation needed] Fukuda is a fan of Gundam series creator Yoshiyuki Tomino and his works including the aforementioned Turn-A Gundam. He is also a Star Wars fan.

Directing style

Fukuda places an emphasis on music. He frequently works with composer Toshihiko Sahashi to craft scores for his shows, and also takes great interest in the creation of opening, ending, and insert themes.[citation needed] In an interview published in the liner notes for the second GEAR Fighter Dendoh OST, he challenged fans to guess the still-unaired ending of the TV series based on the musical themes contained on the CD.[citation needed] In comments he wrote for the release of T.M. Revolution's "coordinate" album, he commented that much of the tone and story of the original Gundam SEED was inspired by the sound of T.M. Revolution's music.[citation needed] He echoed this in a television appearance alongside Takanori Nishikawa, in which he stated that the character of Shinn Asuka and much of the plot of Gundam SEED Destiny were crafted based on the T.M. Revolution song "ignited".[citation needed] This close relationship became something of a joke in both SEED and SEED Destiny, as characters voiced by Takanori Nishikawa make cameo appearances.[citation needed]

Gear Fighter Dendoh character designer Hisayuki Hirokazu refers to him in comments published on his "Flame Talk" web site as "my greatest ally and worst enemy", in reference to his habit of rejecting character designs other directors might accept.[citation needed]

Fukuda's style of direction has become widely imitated following Dendoh and SEED's popularity, particularly its emphasis on extremely dynamic camera angles and digital effects during combat sequences.[citation needed] Most mecha series produced after SEED contain combat choreography elements directly influenced by Mitsuo Fukuda's work.[citation needed]

Fukuda recorded full episode commentaries for the Italian DVD release of GEAR Fighter Dendoh.[citation needed] Similar commentaries were later included on the recent Japanese box set of GEAR Fighter Dendoh.

Marriage

Fukuda is married to Chiaki Morosawa.

Though Morosawa did not write the anime story until Cyber Formula Saga, a 1996 anime, Fukuda domestically consulted to her about the series since the TV series of Cyber Formula[1], the first anime series Fukuda directed. Now she is a writer mainly for his works, like Gear Fighter Dendoh, Gundam SEED and SEED Destiny. The Gundam SEED movie is on hold because she has taken ill and cannot write it.

References

  1. interview with Mitsuo Fukuda from Future GPX Cyber Formula OVA series Complete file (Shinseisha {新声社} World series Vol.19, 1999)
ar:ميتسو فكداzh:福田己津央

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