[Honey’s Anime Interview] Studio TRIGGER for PROMARE at Anime Expo 2019

Hello All! We here at Honey’s Anime welcome you back to another Anime Expo coverage. Today, we present you with our interview session with TRIGGER Studios’ newest iteration, PROMARE! PROMARE is a unique take on futurized firefighters known as anti-Burnish rescue team, Burning Rescue, battling in a world where some people have been transformed or mutated as humans with fire abilities. They are known as the Burnish and are threatening a nation with their terror. The story follows Galo Thymos, a rookie Burning Rescue member who strives to end this terror by attempting to take down the leader of the group, Lio Fotia, but discovers an unforgiving truth that will change everything we know about the Burnish!

We were able to view the movie prior to having our interview which was a group interview with other media representatives, so we’ll be summarizing for the most part but answers from TRIGGER will be in full. We want to make sure everything is conveyed well so we fans don’t miss a beat. So without further ado, let’s get cracking.

*Warning!! Spoilers for PROMARE Ahead!!*

Koyama Shigeto


Imaishi Hiroyuki

The members from the TRIGGER team who were present and behind PROMARE, Hiromi Wakabayashi-san, Shigeto Koyama-san, and Hiroyuki Imaishi-san, tried to answer our curious questions as much as possible. Starting things off, we wanted to know about the designs of the anime movie and if there was a reason to revisit past work styles, as there is a lot of resemblance to Darling in the FranXX and Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, but the action sequences and music are very much close to Kill la Kill?

Well, since we've produced many other titles that have different directors, with PROMARE, it has the same director as Kill la Kill so that could be why there are similarities between them but that is the style and vibe I present especially with the action sequences and it looking like Kill la Kill.

Since you brought up Darling in the FranXX, most of the animation and the visual aspects of it were executed by A-1 Pictures who are more commonly known as Clover Works, which Studio TRIGGER was more responsible for the designs of the series.

After watching the movie, we can definitely understand now why there are so many similarities with other works. Seems natural considering that is indeed what defines an artist and his/her style of works. We continued with our questions and what was on our mind next was furthering our curiosity by delving back into the character designs and how they are similar, more particularly with Galo Thymos in PROMARE and him looking a lot like Kamina from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann.

*chuckles* So, all of my characters have a specific characteristic to them that are apparent in almost any protagonist that I depict and this can apply to literally almost all of my works like Panty from Panty and Stocking, Ryuoko as well. Like Simon and Kamina from Gurren Lagann tend to have spikey hair with a very bold personality and this is the same for the eyes, as they are not a weak character and it is pretty apparent if you compare to say Panty’s hairstyle to Galo, they are both spiked up and so forth.

To conclude, I will usually start off with a very rough image of the character and obviously, each project will have a different character designer, so the character designer will interpret his character drawing to whatever final take is and this will provide a difference between each series but it is also the reason why all these characters such as Galo and Kamina having strong resemblances. So, everybody may think it is only Galo and Kamina but if you look throughout all other characters in PROMARE, it will become more apparent.

Moving on, our next question was more about the design and colors overall, which are very vivid and pop-y (like the music) and how PROMARE has an 80s to 90s feel to it, what lead you all to this route of visual imagery of design?

When we went into this we used some CG from the very beginning so we needed to make the designs and colors as simple as possible and due to that, we ended up with what is presented in the final process of the film.

I want to add that there is always something in style or trending and at the time, this was a representation of what was in style or trending. The iPhone’s app design shown in the movie is a good example as before the designs for these apps had shadow and a bit of a 3D design to it than what they are right now but nowadays, they are very flat. We decide that this is a style that will be going on for a long while and that is why we try to incorporate that in the film’s approach.

Also, I noticed that a lot of animation overseas are now becoming very photo-realistic and this same trend is now taking over in the Japanese animation industry. The details are becoming more and more rich in Japanese animation so I intentionally took the opposite route with PROMARE. This is something that I had been talking to Imaishi-san for a while since Kill la Kill and there is this very short film project called Sex and Violence with Machspeed which was kind of a test project for us as to how to approach PROMARE.

With that being said, we continued to wonder if that is going to be the norm in designing anime now, moving between 2D and 3D, and wanted to know their take on it with this sort of hybrid style of animation?

Yes, we think that CG and the format of moving from 2D to 3D will be the next best thing.

Moving on to more questions on our mind, we wanted to know what thought process they went through when having an unwitting protagonist finding out that his way of life is indeed not the correct way and that there is more to the Burnish than people know?

Our main objective for the film wasn’t to depict an opposition with the minorities in the film—which are the Burnish. This was not our main focal point. I wanted to depict a character that isn’t easily swayed by the masses. As soon as Galo figures out what's going on and that the Burnish are actually just as human as we all are, he begins to question the one person who has answers, Kray Foresight. So the main focal point here is that we wanted to have a character who is true to his beliefs. We thought it would be easier to present a story where Galo is the main protagonist because he’s more in the middle-ground of the plot of the story.

As an example, if we were to make Lio the protagonist, it would just become what is more stereotypical in anime, the story would just be about the oppressor oppressing the oppressed and we didn’t want that. This may be really hard to depict in real-life as most are either biased, one-sided, or neutral, we wanted something a little more open-minded. In real-life, a lot of people contradict themselves basically, activists are trying to save the Earth and the ozone layer but still want air-conditioning, so to speak. Galo’s opinion in itself is rather contradictory but that applies to all. Everybody has their faults in life but the story kind of ends where Galo now has to think about what to do from this point on. What is his future now?!

We feel the same way now, actually. *chuckles*

As we continued, a question that one of the media representatives asked was about the ending credits of the film, in the Special Thanks section, TRIGGER gives credit to Yonkers Fire Department Squad 11 and they were curious, why the acknowledgment?

Well, we will say that PROMARE is heavily influenced by the city buildings in New York but it is not the location per se, but we did go on a location hunt quite a while ago and the Yonkers Fire Department members were helping us out and they were also very nice and showed us a lot of stuff we needed to know for research purposes. With that, it was only natural to put them in the Special Thanks section.

From this moment, we were running out of time and only had about 1-2 more questions depending on the answers given, we wanted to know which was more taxing regarding production and meeting deadlines: TV series or movies?

If I had to choose, I would have to say TV because there is a small milestone you have to meet every week for half a year. You have to deliver an episode no matter what. That is very stressful but, on the other hand, with movies, you have one delivery date and when it comes, it hits like a brick wall. *chuckles* What we’re trying to say is that we’d rather get it over with in one blow rather having a series a small blows every week.

Now, this was our last question and one of the media reps wanted to know about Inferno Cop 2 and if it will continue to be produced?

Inferno Cop 2 has been put on hold due to PROMARE and our President won’t allow us to work on it unless we do real work with PROMARE so since that is almost over, we’ll see.

If you pay really close attention while watching PROMARE, there is a very short Inferno Cop easter-egg that is literally like a second that is hard to find. It’s fast! It is also a huge hint for Inferno Cop 2 but again, it isn’t simple to find. So happy huntings because when you find it, the level of detail we put into it will be impressive! We know you’ll like it.

Final Thoughts

Aaannnndd that is it, folks! That was all the time we had with the TRIGGER team and we do very much appreciate them taking the time to sit down with us and fill us in on all the details of our burning questions. We were honestly able to ask 2 of our questions during this group press meeting with TRIGGER. Most of the questions we had written were answered early on by the other media reps and with theirs included, we feel you have the best experience of knowing the most right here on Honey’s Anime. If you want to read our review of PROMARE, the link is below this interview. And if you want to check out PROMARE in theaters near you, visit this website: https://gkidstickets.com/us/promare/synopsis/?campaign=powster

Let us know what you think about our coverage and we’ll try to get back to you in the comment box below. If there’s a burning question on your mind, sound off and maybe we’ll ask it the next time we see them!? Have a good one!

Ja ne!

035 [Honey’s Anime Interview] Studio TRIGGER for PROMARE at Anime Expo 2019

Editor in Chief

Author: Alfonso "Fonzy" Ortiz

I'm a Geek, Nerd, Writer, and lover of all video games, anime, science, technology and the internet. I previously worked for STFUandPlay.com, a contributing writer as the Japanese Corespondent at TheKoalition.com and founded a website called Transcend-Gaming.com! I currently live in Japan as Editor in Chief of Honey's Anime and its very talented writers! I'm down for anything! What do you want to do?

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