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Books  >>  Biography

August Ragone

Eiji Tsuburaya

August Ragone Eiji Tsuburaya Master Of Monsters Defending The Earth With Ultr
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Biographical note:

August Ragone has written and commented on Japanese film and pop culture for more than 20 years. He lives in San Francisco.

Main description:

Now in paperback! Behind-the-scenes hero to anyone who's thrilled by giant monsters duking it out over Tokyo, Eiji Tsuburaya was the visual effects mastermind behind Godzilla, Ultraman, and numerous Japanese science fiction movies and TV shows beloved around the world. The first book on this legendary film figure in English, this highly visual biography surveys his fascinating life and career, featuring hundreds of film stills, posters, concept art, and delightful on-set photos of Tsuburaya prompting monsters to crush landmark buildings. A must-have for fans, this towering tribute also profiles Tsuburaya's film collaborators, details his key films and shows, and spotlights the enduring popularity of the characters he helped create.

Review quote:

"A gorgeous book filled with fantastic photos and information about the father of tokusatsu."
-Kaijucast

Review quote:

"Eiji Tsuburaya was a very reserved man on the set. Most of the direction he gave me for the performances was, 'I trust you to do it. Do what you feel is best, I'll leave it up to you.' And that's the way he was for most of the films we worked on together after Godzilla. After the wires broke on the Rodan suit, causing me to fall several meters onto the miniature set, he chided, 'It's good that you didn't die; because I need you to finish the film.' And I replied, 'That's easy for you to say; I'm the one inside the costume.' But, these things would sometimes happen. It's been forty-three years since Tsuburaya has left us, but what a happy feeling to have a book published about him after all this time. And that it came not from Japan, but from the U.S.! I'm sure the Old Man would be as happy as I am. August did a wonderful job. Thanks to all for not forgetting him."
-Haruo Nakajima
original Godzilla suit actor (1954-1972) and the Man of a Thousand Monsters

Review quote:

"When I moved to America to start filming Godzilla, this was one of the few books I brought with me. Eiji is a true inspiration, and a one of a kind innovator of special effects, the likes of which we'll probably never see again in cinema."
-Gareth Edwards, director of Monsters and Godzilla (2014).

Review quote:

'Anyone with a taste for reading about frantic production schedules and creative jury-rigging solutions will find much to enjoy in Ragone's text.'
-Powell's Books.com, November 2007

Review quote:

'In Eiji Tsuburaya: Master of Monsters, San Francisco based writer August Ragone has produced a fond, generously illustrated biography of the tokusatsu (special effects) genius '
-Time Magazine, December 13, 2007

Review quote:

'The difference between this book and other coffee table volumes that have covered daikaiju before, though, is the staggeringly researched detail that Ragone has put into the text itself. This is not just a picture book to flip through, nod approvingly at and stick on the shelf; this is a record easily in scale with the monsters Tsuburaya created a critical and historical look at the creation and output of an industry that spanned (and has continued to span) the decades.
-Tooth and Dagger, October 2007


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