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The Next Generation - Patlabor - (Live Action Theatrical Releases)

Currently in production. 48 min x 12 episode series with a 15 min "Episode Zero" prologue, to be released as a seven part limited theatrical release from 5 April 2014 to 10 January 2015. Untitled theatrical film due for release in 2015.
Cast: Erina Mano, Fukushi Seiji, Rina Ota, Toshio Kakeia, Shigeru Chiba, Yoshinori Horimoto, Shigekazu Tajiri, Kohei Shiotsuka and Yoshikazu Fujiki
 

Staff

Director: Mamoru Oshii
Episode Directors: Takanori Tsujimoto, Kiyotaka Taguchi and Hiroaki Yuasa
Movie Version Assistant Directors: Takahide Sano and Isao Kaneko
Screenplays: Mamoru Oshii and Kei Yamamura
Draft Proposal: Headgear
Music: Kenji Kawai
Production: Omnibus Japan/Tohokushinsha Film Corporation

Last Updated: 6 April 2014

On 21 March 2013 at the Tokyo International Anime Fair, Tohokushinsha Film Corporation (TFC), who had previously co-produced all of the Patlabor anime, announced that they would be producing a Patlabor live action project due for release in 2014. In a press conference via video streaming site Nico Nico Live on 25 September 2013, it was officially announced that the project will take the form of a 12 part series comprising of 48 minute episodes and a 15 minute "Episode 0" prologue. Confusingly the episodes will be released as a seven part limited theatrical release with the first part to premier in the Shinjuku Piccadilly cinema complex on 5 April 2014. Episode 0 is titled "Glory to Special Vehicles Section Two (Eikoo no Tokusha Ni Ka)" and will focus on the history of Labors and the Police Labor unit. Episode one is called "Mobilize the Third Generation (San Daime Shutsudoo Seyo)". This project will have a similar release pattern to recent anime projects such as "Yamato 2199", "Gundam Unicorn", "Ghost in Shell: Arise" and "Code Geass: Akito the Exiled"; first a limited theatrical screening, a broadcast on pay satellite TV station Star Channel three weeks after and then a home video a month or so after the theatrical release. Happinet Pictures will be releasing the first volume of the series on 26 April 2014 on Blu-ray and DVD. The Episode 0 prologue will be broadcast on pay satellite TV station Star Channel on 8 March 2014 with other parts broadcast three weeks after the theatrical date. The total budget of the project is 2 billion yen with principal photography running from June 2013 to December 2013. Two full size (8 metre tall) AV-98 Ingram Labor props were built for the project at a cost several tens of millions of yen. Mamoru Oshii will be chief director of the project and will also be writing and directing a full length (around 100 minutes) theatrical feature due for release in 2015. The feature film is presently untitled. Shochiku will be distributing the films in Japan and the official website notes that Shinjuku Piccadilly cinema complex will premiere the theatrical feature in 2015.

Plot
As has been previously reported via leaks since (northern hemisphere) summer 2013, and as hinted by the projectís title, the project is not a remake of the original series but a new story set in Tokyo 2013, seemingly in the same timeline as the "Early Days" OVA and the anime movies. The production staff refer to the characters in the project as the third generation of the SV2. Somewhere in the intervening years between 2002 ("Patlabor 2 the movie") and 2013, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police disbanded Division 1, but Division 2 managed to survive despite budget cuts due to a long recession. After the completion of the Babylon project, Labors are less common than they used to be and parts are hard to come by. In fact due to these factors, Division 2's Ingrams are cobbled together out of spare parts. But despite the decrease in the Labor population, Labor crime is still rampant in the city. Division 2 now consists of a new set of officers which seem just as oddball as the original first generation officers (in the original anime). Mamoru Oshii stated in the press conference that the series will have a "slapstick ambience", while the full length movie will be more dramatic. It has been noted by fans that this follows the same pattern of the seven part "Early Days" OVA and the first anime film.

Cast
Akira IzuminoAkira Izumino

Akira Izumino is the first Labor pilot. She loves Labors, Police TV Dramas and is a genius gamer who enters a state of super concentration when "in the zone". The one thing she doesn't like is being compared to the first generation SV2 members. Akira Izumino previously appeared in Oshii's 2011 light novel, "Shocking Upset: Metropolitan Police Special Vehicles Section 2 (Bankuruwase: Keishi-cho Keibi-bu Tokushu Sharyo Ni-ka)". Akira Izumino was also Noa's pseudonym in the "
Red Labor Landing" TV episode. "Izumino is played by Erina Mano, a former pop idol previously associated with idol unit Ongaku Gatas, which was part of the "Hello! Project", itself an offshoot of popular idol group Morning Musume. Coincidently Mano was a member of the "Hello! Project" futsal team Gatas Brilhantes in 2007, while her character, Akira Izumino, also played in a soccer team in the 2011 novel in which she appeared. Mano has had a small number of acting jobs prior to this project including the film "Kai-Ki: Tales of Terror from Tokyo".
Captain Keiji GotodaCaptain Keiji Gotoda

Captain Keiji Gotoda (Toshio Kakei) is Captain Kiichi Gotoís successor. Like Goto he is resourceful and cunning. Because of these attributes he is considered to be like a reincarnation of Goto. Keiji Gotoda previously appeared in Oshii's 2011 light novel, "Shocking Upset: Metropolitan Police Special Vehicles Section 2 (Bankuruwase: Keishi-cho Keibi-bu Tokushu Sharyo Ni-ka)".
Toshio Kakei has previously played Kentaro Shinjo in "Bayside Shakedown", Koichi Fukaura in "Space Travellers" and voiced Angel Benengeli in the anime film "Nasu: Summer in Andalusia".
Yuma ShiobaraYuma Shiobara

Yuma Shiobara (Seiji Fukushi) is Akiraís backup. According to his profile he is a gun otaku and can be found drinking on duty and making plastic models.
Seiji Fukushi has previously appeared in the live action versions of "Nodame Cantabile" and "Touch", as well as the feature film "Swing Girls".
Ekaterina Krachevna KankaevaEkaterina Krachevna Kankaeva (aka Kasha)

Ekaterina Krachevna Kankaeva (aka Kasha, played by Rina Ota) is a Russian officer on loan to train with the SV2. She is back up to the second Labor. She drinks heavily, owns an AK-47 and rides a Ducati bike. Rina Ota has previously had a small number of acting roles such as a guest part in "Neo Ultra Q" and the role of Kazuko "Lady Jane" Matsui in the film "69".
Shigeo ShibaShigeo Shiba

Finally we have Shigeo Shiba (played by Shigeru Chiba, who voiced the original character in the anime). Seemingly the only surviving member of the original SV2 in this project, he took over Seitaroh Sakakiís job as head mechanic sometime before "Patlabor 2 the movie". Shigeo or just plain Shige, was previously second in command of the mechanics at the SV2. He is a man that is truly dedicated to his work, though sometimes he can go overboard. He is a proud member of the SV2, and makes sure the Labors work perfectly. Shige appeared in all version of the anime except the third movie. Shige is played by Shigeru Chiba who is best known as the narrator of "Fist of the North Star", Megane in "Urusei Yatsura", Garlic Jr in "Dragon Ball Z" and Buggy the Clown in "One Piece". He also stared in Mamoru Oshii's first three live action films.
Other Cast Members

Four other cast members were announced
on 17 December 2013, but little is known about the characters at this stage; Yoshinori Horimoto will play the second labor pilot Harao Ota. Shigekazu Tajiri has been cast as the first carrier driver Hiromichi Yamazaki. Kohei Shiotsuka will play the second carrier driver Shinji Osakeya. Finally Yoshikazu Fujiki will take on the role of Buchiyama, second in charge of the maintenance crew.

Staff
Mamoru Oshii will be chief director of both the series and movie. Takanori Tsujimoto ("Bushido Man"), Kiyotaka Taguchi ("Neo Ultra Q") and Hiroaki Yuasa (director of photography for "Assault Girls") will be episode directors for the series. Takahide Sano and Isao Kaneko (assistant director on "Avalon") will be assistant directors on the film version. Oshii and Kei Yamamura are writing the screenplays for the episodes. Oshii will also be writing the screenplay for the theatrical feature. Along with TFC, Omnibus Japan is producing the project. They are company well known for special effects series. Izumi Kazuyoshi is the line producer for the project. Cinema Sound Works are credited with sound recording and a company called Dummy Head will provide "special makeup design". Kenji Kawai will be writing performing the music for both the series and feature film.

Project News
Click on the above link for the history, official announcements and rumours surrounding this project.  The section will be updated as new information comes to light - Last Updated 6 April 2014;


Latest News:
6 April 2014 - Yahoo! Japan Movies User Reviews for Chapter 1
4 April 2014 - Original Soundtrack to be Released 28 May
2 April 2014 - Chapter 2 Trailer Released
31 March 2014 - Poster for Chapter 2 Unveiled, Naoto Takenaka to Guest Star, Nico Nico Douga uploads 25 minute Star Channel special
27 March 2014 - Episode 2 to 4 Titles Announced, Special Items Announced for Attendees of First and Second Week Screening of First Chapter
26 March 2014 - New TNG Patlabor Merchandise, Staff and Cast to Make Appearances at Various Screenings on 5 April 2014
23 March 2014 - National Police Agency Poster Campaign
22 March 2014 - AnimeJapan 2014 Event Round Up
21 March 2014 - Shinjuku Piccadilly Cinemas Display Revolver Cannon Prop
17 March 2014 - Image of First Part's Movie Pamphlet, "Deck Up Event" at Lalaport Toyosu

 

Episode Synopses

0 Glory to Special Vehicles Section Two
1 Mobilise the Third Generation
2 Perform Type 98 Reboot
3 Iron Fist Akira
4 Stray Dog Afternoon
5 TBA
6 TBA
7 TBA
8 TBA
9 TBA
10 TBA
11 TBA
12 TBA

 

Availability
In English

Currently this series has not been licensed for commercial home video or streaming in English anywhere, but I can guarantee it will be fansubbed. Because I only like to support official releases, I won't be providing any links to download this series.

 

In Japanese

This series is available as single DVD and Blu-ray discs in Japan from Happinet Pictures. These DVDs and Blu-rays do not come with English subtitles or an English dub. The DVDs and Blu-rays are only available in Japan, and therefore will only work on DVD and Blu-ray players that are both NTSC compatible and will play region 2 DVD discs (the Blu-rays are region free - if you don't live in Japan, check your DVD's instruction manual to see if it will play the discs). Please see the Japanese Live Action Related Releases Video List for a complete listing of all releases, formats and product specifications for this series.

Title Format Catalogue Number
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 1 (Episodes 0 to 1) [To Be Released 26 April 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8461
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 1 (Episodes 0 to 1) [To Be Released 26 April 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0121
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 2 (Episodes 2 to 3) [To Be Released 28 June 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8462
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 2 (Episodes 2 to 3) [To Be Released 28 June 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0122
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 3 (Episodes 4 to 5) [To Be Released 2 August 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8463
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 3 (Episodes 4 to 5) [To Be Released 2 August 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0123
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 4 (Episodes 6 to 7) [To Be Released 27 September 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8464
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 4 (Episodes 6 to 7) [To Be Released 27 September 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0124
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 5 (Episodes 8 to 9) [To Be Released 8 November 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8465
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 5 (Episodes 8 to 9) [To Be Released 8 November 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0125
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 6 (Episodes 10 to 11) [To Be Released 26 December 2014] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8466
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 6 (Episodes 10 to 1 1) [To Be Released 26 December 2014] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0126
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 7 (Episode 12) [To Be Released 31 January 2015] NTSC DVD, Region 2, Japanese Dialogue Only BIBJ-8467
The Next Generation - Patlabor - Volume 7 (Episode 12) [To Be Released 31 January 2015] NTSC Blu-ray Disc, Region Free, Japanese Dialogue Only BIXJ-0127

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A GWEI Product. ©2003 - 2014 GWEI. The Next Generation - Patlabor - designs, logos and all other images ©2013 - 2014 The Next Generation - Patlabor Production Committee. All other logos/trademarks are copyright of their respective owners/companies. Used for review and illustration purposes only.