Mamoru Oshii

Mamoru Oshii: The Interview

Peter Oberth: What are the challenges now in making a sequel to GHOST IN THE SHELL? There was nothing like it when it came out and now there are all sorts of imitators

Mamoru Oshii: In order to make it a completely new movie from the first one, I had to use different animation techniques. In terms of the theme and concept, it was something that I had been mulling over for a long time. Whether there are imitators or not is not a big issue. Filmmakers tend to copy other films, which I think is not a bad thing as long as they don't copy the basis structure of the overall project.

PO:Do you see this as a franchise or do you think this is the end?

MO: As far as the movie goes, I don't plan to make a sequel to GHOST IN THE SHELL 2, although there may be other media such as games, comic books, and TVs that may continue to make sequels - at least I'm definitely not one of them.

PO: What are your future plans?

MO: To spend some valuable times back home with my dogs, cat and wife.

PO: Do you plan to do any manga work with any of the American comic book companies in the future?

MO: At this point, there is no plan, plus I can't draw.

PO: It's been 9 years since Ghost in the Shell, why did you decide to do the sequel now and have you been working on it in one way or another since then?

MO: My producer Ishikawa has threatened me to do it. He literally said that if I don't do this, then I'd never be able to work with Production I.G again, and that he'll never deal with me in the future.

PO: How do you feel about Ghost in the Shell being the first anime to screen at Cannes and do you feel that you've opened up doors for anime to be taken more seriously?

MO: I was very thrilled to know that anime is now being considered and recognized as a real movie - until later I realized at the end that people in Cannes were still not ready to accept anime.

PO: The 'Stand Alone Complex' has been farely popular this year, how do you feel about that project?

MO: I don't know since I have not seen it myself.

PO: Why did you decide to change production companies between Ghost in the Shell and Ghost in the Shell 2?

MO: I don't belong to any companies. I am a freelance director except for when I make animation movies or OVAs, I only work with Production I.G. Since the completion of Gits, I was away from I.G because I was working on non-anime related projects.

PO: Aside from Ghost in the Shell, what are some of your favorite anime movies and series?

MO: I don't really have one. If anything, it would have to be my debut movie "Angel's Egg."

PO: Finally, what are your feelings on censorship in America and how it eventually effects movies like yours?

MO: There isn't much censorship in Japan so I'm not too familiar with it. I don't make my movies for any particular country - I just make what I want to make without worrying about censorship or market.

Peter Oberth
Interview by Peter Oberth
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