Shoji Kawamori_12053.jpg

Shoji Kawamori

Shoji Kawamori

Designer / Animator / Director

Shoji Kawamori is a vision creator, who handles animation directing, planning, concept creation, scriptwriting, video and stage directing, as well as mechanical design.

Mr. Kawamori was born in 1960 in Toyama, Japan. At the age of three, he moved from the snowy village of Gokayama to rapidly urbanizing Yokohama, where he experienced severe culture shock after witnessing various aspects of modern urban life, including steam locomotives and streetcars – from this experience sprang his strong desire to “create excitement that would surprise everyone” and to be involved in the creative industry.

After enrolling in Keio University, he was able to cultivate free sensibility through interactions with many creative alumni who are internationally active designers and creators. While still studying engineering at Keio, he joined Studio Nue (a creative planning and production group) which has been a central force in the development of Japanese science fiction and animation.

Shortly after joining Studio Nue and while still studying at Keio, he transferred to Takara (currently Takara Tomy). While there, he participated in the initial design of the “Transformers” central robot character Optimus Prime, as well as the car robot of “Diaclone” and several other popular mechanical designs.

While simultaneously participating in several animation projects and mechanical design, he also participated in the development of “The Super Dimension Fortress Macross” (1982-1983) that was launched as a project with his friends from Studio Nue. As a primary team member, he was intimately involved in original story creation, mechanical design, script, and storyboard writing.

At the age of 21, he independently developed "Valkyrie," the world's first fully variable three- stage fighter, which was the leading mechanism that appears in this work.

He made his directorial debut at the age of 23 in the movie version of "The Super Dimension Fortress Macross: Do you remember love? " (1984).

This work and "Valkyrie" were broadcast on television around the world, and the video that mixes realistic mecha and battle scenes, idol music and romance elements was used in the entertainment industry, including Hollywood. For many children and young people, this was the first Japanese animation to become very “cool” around the world.

In the subsequent "Macross" series, he still played a key role in the creative works, with original stories, directoring, and mechanical designs.