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Yōkai In Cinema, 1968–2008

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Chapter Summary

The emergence of yōkai-themed films chronologically coincides with the television broadcast of the 1968-69 Gegegeno Kitaro animation series. The Yōkai Daisensō narratives, whether in manga, animation or film, center on a war fought between two groups of yōkai: aggressors and defenders. The film Yōkai Daisensō, directed by Kuroda Yoshiyuki, is the second in the yokai film trilogy produced by Daiei Motion Pictures in 1968-69. The yōkai film trilogy of the 1960s introduced character, costume and mask design of yōkai to postwar Japanese cinema. The storyline of Tezuka's original manga narrative remained unfinished as it could not rival Mizuki's contemporaneous yokai manga, Gegegeno Kitaro, in popularity. Umezu Kazuo, the pioneer of Japanese horror manga, created the Nekome Kozō (Cat-eye Boy) manga series showcasing the author's original yōkai characters, that was published in the manga magazines Shōnen Gahōsha in 1967-68, Shōnen King in 1968, and Shōnen Sunday in 1976.

Keywords: Cat-eye Boy; Gegegeno Kitaro; postwar Japanese cinema; Shōnen Gahōsha; Umezu Kazuo; yōkai-themed films



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