Interview
Eiko Tanaka
Atsuko Fukushima's Genius Party, from Genius Party. © Beyond C
"If there is a theme [for Genius Party], it would be energy," says Tanaka. "I don't mean the energy of the animation, but the energy that the project has. As I have stated earlier, Studio 4°C was born from the desires of the creators who longed to create what they really wanted to make. Creators and people generally cannot keep living without expressing themselves. The film has to have this kind of energy with strong longing for self-expression. This was the only requirement and also the theme. It was of course clear to us that it is much easier to sell the product if all the short films have the same tone from a given particular theme. But we chose not to make the same theme or set particular conditions to the films. Instead, we decided to have the diversity of these films be the sales point. The films themselves do not have relevancy with each other. We are expecting the quality and the completeness in each film that would make them independently stand out and bloom. We chose participating directors and the contents of the project based on their genuine abilities. Basically if the energy was there in the project that the director brought in, we took that project. I asked all directors to come up with synopsis and image boards and elaborated until I was satisfied with them. However there were other cases, too. Some projects fell before the completion of the films, after elaborating the synopsis and the image boards. It might seem as if it is against 'The creators create what they really want to.' However, raising the quality of the film to the point that the film is widely accepted by the largest audience is the role of the producer, and the process to reach that point is very important.

The Genius Party omnibus
Genius Party (Atsuko Fukushima)
Shanghai Dragon (Shoji Kawamori)
Deathtic 4 (Shinji Kimura)
Doorbell (Yuji Fukuyama)
Limit Cycle (Hideki Futamura)
Happy Machine (Masaaki Yuasa)
Baby Blue (Shinichiro Watanabe)
Gala (Mahiro Maeda)
Tojin Kit (Tatsuyuki Tanaka)
'Wanwa' the Puppy (Shinya Ohira)
Untitled (Hiro Yamagata)
Moondrive (Kazuto Nakazawa)
Le manchot mélomane (Nicolas de Crécy)
Dimension Bomb (Koji Morimoto)
"Now the popular animation films on market are for kids and their families. We want to make films for different audiences. For instance, those people who are keen on the latest music, sports, fashion, and culture. Our main targets are the people who would buy DVDs with their own money, not with their parents' money. Since the target audience is these particular people, we also came up with new ideas for where the films should be viewed. To deliver Genius Party to this type of audience can be different from showing it at the ordinary theatres. It might be accepted better if it was viewed as part of the contents of certain events. For example, a young guy who is very keen on the latest trends would not go to see an animation film at a regular theatre, but might go to a live concert and animation film with friends at a club. The younger generation prefers events and live performances. Live venues give us various ways of showing films, and enable us to provide new ways of experiencing motion pictures to the audience. With Genius Party, we would like to try the potential of short films. We would like to introduce a new lifestyle of playing with pictures using the characteristics of short films."
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