Sunday, August 9, 2009

Vampire Party

A fun thing connected to movie making is not the actual filmmaking process, which is mostly a direct path to hell, but the wrap parties. I'm a big fan of wrap parties. I've been to many in Japan, several Godzilla, Ju-On, and Death Note, among others, ones. It's always a good time and a chance to celebrate the monumental effort movie making entails.The other night I attended the final promotional party for "Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl." While not an official wrap party, it kind of turned out that way, with much of the audience being either staff or core fans. In fact, as the official end of the pre-promotional blitz, everyone was letting their hair down and just having the best time they could.

Taking place at the Ruido Live House in Shibuya, the evening began with Maki and Yoko of the group "Trippi's" singing "Pinky Love," one of their songs used in "Vampire Girl." I love this song so much. It's a kind of 60s style tribute tune that helps smooth over some of the violent aspects of the film. Both girls are totally cute, with an enjoyable, deadpan stage presence.

Following this directors Nishimura and Tomomatsu, Frankenstein actress Eri Otoguro, stunt director Tak Sugimoto, and others took the stage in an attempt to talk about the film. But with Nishimura basically talked out when it comes to the film, he was more interested in horsing around, relentlessly teasing Tomomatsu and some of the other staff.

This ended about 30 minutes later. Nishimura then called a few of us who worked on the film to the stage. As mentioned in a previous blog, I did the subtitles for the film. I got a good laugh tonight when pointing out that my contribution has little meaning in Japan. But the truth is, I busted my rear on those subtitles, and Nishimura was quick to mention that good subs can make or break a film abroad.

I was also happy that I finally got to put in some one-on-one time with the adorable Eri, who plays the 'evil' Frankenstein actress. She came tonight wearing a yukata, giving the party a pleasant traditional touch. Eri's a charming young woman and delivers a terrific performance in "Vampire Girl."

After this my friend Kai got up and wowed us with some pole dancing. While not a fan of sexually stimulated dance, I have to admit that Kai is quite good. A professional dancer as well as an actress, Kai appears in "Vampire Girl" as the leader of the ganguro clique. I'm embarrassed to say that because she wears so much make-up in the film I didn't know it was Kai until this evening. She's also in Noburo Iguchi's new "Robo Geisha" movie.

Somewhere near the end of Kai's performance, Nishimura climbed on stage and started calling some of us back on the stage for a turn on the pole. I was one of the first called upon.

Jumping onto the silver rod, I had to use what little strength I posses to pull myself up. Then, with the even less coordination I have, I did my best to spin around a couple of times, finally falling down totally exhausted. I tell you, it's not as easy as it looks! Although this was about the last thing expected to do this evening, I'm happy that I gave it a whirl.

Get it...? "Gave it a whirl." You know, pole dancing... spinning around... whirl...? Ah, forget it!

As the evening was wearing to an end, Nishimura and I demanded that Trippi's get back on stage and sing their theme song to "Vampire Girl" once more. Nishimura set a chair right in front of the stage, while I climbed to the side in front of Yoko. And the crowd went wild!

Also at the party was Jiro Kaneko, writer of the Japanese script for my film, "The iDol," who came with Benny, one of the stars of Nishimura's 2008 film, "Tokyo Gore Police." Benny's a good guy and a decent actor. I hope I can find a part for him some day in one of my films. In addition, I got to hang out with Remi Otsuka and Miharu Yamazaki, my buddies at Excellent Films, the mini-Frankenstein trio from "Vampire Girl," and Rei and Yumemi Kato two actress. Yumemi (in red beside me) is a Robo Geisha in the film "Robo Geisha."

An hour later the inner core of the night went to a small standing bar around the corner where we continued to while away the evening, drinking, toasting and singing theme songs to 60s anime. Only in Japan.
Here's a truncated version of Maki and Yoko's song. Not sure why the person who upped this cut it up in this way... Moron!


  1. So where are the photos of you pole dancing? >:O

  2. Hey! It's not easy to pole dance and take photos at the same time!!!

  3. Just came across this blog while searching for the trippis. I desperately need to buy their album. I am in SPFX and got to meet Yoshihiro Nishimura himself! This was in NY Asian Film Festival. His movies were a hit and I can't wait to see RoboGeisha!