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Interview Now - 石井杏奈 (Ishii Anna), 池田千尋 (Ikeda Chihiro) -(1/2)

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"Kioku no Gihou (The Craft of Memories)" released on Friday 27 November is a live-action movie based on a masterpiece from the manga artist, Yoshino Sakumi. It is a beautiful yet bitter mystery movie that depicts the journey of a high school girl in search of her lost childhood memories. The director Ikeda Chihiro, and Ishii Anna, who starred in the movie, visited Fukuoka on Sunday 22 November for the promotion prior to the release. Guess what? This movie was shot at several places in Fukuoka! Besides the exclusive interview with the two, there will be information about gifts for readers so be sure not to miss out anything♪

A movie that reminds you about yourself, your family and your loved ones

asianbeat (hereafter referred to as ab): Yoshino Sakumi's stories are often bitterly beautiful and create a kind of solitary feeling. What were your concerns when making the live-action movie?

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(From the left) 石井杏奈 (Ishii Anna) and 池田千尋 (Ikeda Chihiro)
Ikeda Chihiro (hereafter referred to as Ikeda): I read the original manga when I was in my twenties, and I read it over and over again. I keep thinking how to keep up with the changes between the time of publication and the present, and whether Ms. Yoshino, who passed away in 2016, would be pleased. I wanted to make something based on the images left in my memories.

Ishii Anna (hereafter referred to as Ishii):Actually, when I first read the original manga, I thought that the role of Kazuno Karen (鹿角華蓮) was a bit too dark because of her past. But then I realized that's not the case. After many rehearsals with the director I managed to portray a positive Karen.
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ab: My heart skipped a beat when I saw Karen and Hogari Satoi (穂苅怜), the role played by Kurihara Goro, get closer to each other. So Ms. Ishii, I wonder if which scene impressed you the most?

Ishii: I think it'll be the scene when I was taking a night bus from Tokyo to Karen's birthplace, Fukuoka. As I became physically closer to Satoi, it seemed like the sense of distance in my heart was changing too. That's a turning point I'd to accept.

ab: Since "memory" is the main theme of the movie, I wonder if you have any special ways to remember the important things in your work?

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Ishii: It's like "here, this is how it means so the next, it should go like that", trying to remember it logically just like doing math / multiplication. Also I'd read them (the lines) once a day to make sure I'm clear with the flow, and then do it again the night before so as to remember it well.

Ikeda: Anna-chan did a great job on her lines!

ab: That's impressive!! Besides that, how do you feel about the filming location in Fukuoka?

Ikeda: Those are the places that the producers and I had finally found after the location scouting at many places in Fukuoka Prefecture about 3 years ago. The stone bridge in Kurume particularly matches the bridge that appeared in the memory of Karen.

Ishii: Oh I didn't know about that! All the settings looked the same with those appeared in the manga, I'm really surprised and moved to learn that they're actually being so carefully selected.

Ikeda: The last scene was meant to be in Tokyo but it was shot in Fukuoka, I think the locals can tell immediately just by looking at the buses around (lol). Not only that there were beautiful cherry blossom trees, the straight slope looks just like road that Karen and Rei had been walking through, so it's really one of my favourite scenes.
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ab: I really appreciate that you've shared so many precious stories with us! Finally, is there anything you'd like to say to everyone who's looking forward to the movie?

Ishii: It's a movie that'll make you think about your family and the loved ones in your life, so I hope you'd enjoy it and appreciate that kind of feeling.

Ikeda: I believe most of us must have come across the moments of evaluating ourselves and wondering how to overcome the obstacles in life, so I hope this movie creates a kind of resonance with your own life experiences.
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