Interview with Gen Urobuchi, Composer and Scriptwriter of “Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet” [1/4]

Interview with Gen Urobuchi, Composer and Scriptwriter of “Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet” [1/4]

A boy named Ledo and his mecha, Chamber, drift to an unknown planet. What strange things await them in this new world?

Voicing Ledo is Kaito Ishikawa, who makes his voice acting debut with the role.

There are many more people working on this anime besides the voice actors, such as animators, scriptwriters, and producers. What kind of people are they? What kind of work are they doing? There are so many things unknown...

Just like Ledo, let’s set off to encounter the unknown!

In this interview, Ishikawa will be talking with the staff of the production team on Gargantia with the guidance of Hirasawa P from Production I.G.

What is the job of a scriptwriter?

Urobuchi: Thanks for having me here.

Ishikawa: Thank you for taking the time... Ah, Hello, I’m Kaito Ishikawa! (laughs)

Hirasawa: Such integrity (laughs).

Urobuchi: It’s because we’re not on the radio (laughs).

Ishikawa: First, I’d like to ask about your job, what is it that you actually do?

Urobuchi: Well, I’m a scriptwriter. This time, I’ve been present from around the start of the project, so my position might be different from that of an average scriptwriter’s. They probably don’t often get involved in the series composition, the “how should the story go on” part.

In the beginning when Hirasawa told me about the anime, they didn’t even have a frame for it, only that it should have robots in it and that it would be intended for high school graduates and college students, people ranging from 18 or 19 to mid-20s in age. When I was thinking about what this age group’s biggest concern might be, I settled on finding employment. I started from the idea that we should make a story that conveys the message "I'm not afraid to enter society."

Ishikawa: In other words, you wanted to make a hopeful story.

Urobuchi: Yes.

Ishikawa: I see. I am from the same generation, so there are people around me who have just finished high school and are entering the working world and people who made it into a university and are on the hunt for a job. You were aiming to create something that could cheer up people like them?

Urobuchi: Exactly. I thought that it’d be nice to make a story for those who feel perplexed because of job hunting itself or because they have just entered their position as a first-year working adult, so I thought out the plot accordingly.

Ishikawa: There is also Murata and others involved in this project, so how did you become a central figure in composing the story?

Urobuchi: Yes, it is quite rare to have the chance to start from a “let’s make a story like this” point. In most cases, the series composition stage starts from a “we want a story like this” standpoint. Gargantia is a project I’ve been involved in even before that stage.

Ishikawa: I see! So you are involved further beyond series composition.

Hirasawa: Director Murata and Urobuchi are penned as the original planners.

Ishikawa: Oh, I see, so there is something called an “original plan.”

Writing begins!

Ishikawa: You have been involved in Gargantia since its startup. How long after did you start scenario writing?

Urobuchi: Pretty long after.

Hirasawa: Right.

Urobuchi: First, there were some complications before Murata joined us, and after him joining, the contents suddenly changed a great deal. It started off taking place in a parallel world, but the stage was changed to Earth. It also came up that we should make use of the rusty looks of enormous fleets. After that, we were given permission for 13 episodes, and only at that point were the scriptwriters assigned. Since I am responsible for composing the series, I took the first and the last episode for myself. You could say the first episode serves as a handhold for other writers so that they can get a feel for how I would like them to write by showing them the taste I am going for. The first episode needs to be done by the composer.

Ishikawa: And that means you will be responsible for the last episode as well?

Urobuchi: That’s right. Maybe because it’s a tradition, sort of?

Hirasawa: It’s a tradition, because the composer is the head of the scenario writing team. He is the person who decides what kind of story it will be and gives guidelines on the story’s development. Since the first and the last episodes are the most important, it is very common that the series composer writes them and the supervisor himself directs them.

Urobuchi: Exactly.

Gargantia x Tokyo Otaku Mode Special Site:
http://otakumode.com/sp/gargantia

Source:
http://gargantia.jp/#kaito_0 (Japanese)

© Oceanus / Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Production Committee

These are your people. Join the TOM Fan Club to meet more fun, friendly otaku: https://otakumode.com/fb/8it