The anime film Cencoroll Connect has been released in Japan. The direction, script-writing and animation in this film were almost entirely done by Atsuya Uki. The story of this short anime, a sequel to the original Cencoroll, is about an unknown white creature appearing from nowhere and boys and girls trying to take control of it.

In this interview translated from Comic Natalie, they speak with Uki and ryo (supercell), who’s in charge of this film’s score. It’s been 10 years since the original Cencoroll, they discuss the journey until the film’s release day, the experiences and the inside stories between the two. In their own words, what exactly is Cencoroll?

The way Uki requests music is very unique

The both of you first worked together in 2009’s Cencoroll, how did you end up meeting each other?

Uki: It was thanks to Iwakami’s (Executive producer of Cencoroll who’s now the Director of Aniplex) introduction. But it wasn’t dramatic or anything. (laughs) However, I’ve known of ryo before our meeting. At that time, he used to make many songs on Nico Nico, like Melt for example.

Ryo: I’m glad you know well. (laughs) On the other hand, I have no heard of Uki until we actually spoke, I thought it was amazing you made an anime all by yourself. The music you used in the pilot version was really good.

Uki: I asked Yasaki (Shunsunke) to make that track for me. When that video went up on the net, YouTube wasn’t really a thing then.

As you both worked together on Cencoroll, what impression do you both of have of each other as creators?

ryo: This isn’t from a creative perspective but I first though “Uki is amazing” is when he was using a MacBook Pro 17 back then. To think that Uki was using that to create videos, at that time I thought: “You can make videos like this on a laptop?!” (laughs)

Uki: I originally used an iMac for my work but it broke down. And if I had to leave Tokyo to do work it’ll be difficult. So it’s not like I was doing work on my laptop because I wanted to actually. (laughs)

ryo: So that’s why! (laughs) To go back to the original question, Uki has a unique was of requesting music. Normally, you’re asked for “song for a sad scene”, and you make a song to fit that. For Uki, he would send the film to me and I would watch that and make songs to fit it. It’s very similar to making BGM for overseas films. Also, sometimes I would receive requests like “make something for part A to B of this particular scene.” I’ll make the song regardless if it right or wrong, and if it doesn’t fit Uki’s image he’ll reply me with “that’s not right” and I’ll re-do it. On top of that, I feel that for myself, music is something that listening from start to end the very first time is important. With that in mind, I watched Cencoroll 100 times in the end. (laughs)

Uki: I usually request a lot too, so I’m sorry. (laughs) But ryo would take everything I say and reply accordingly. It’s like giving punches in many directions. Even so, him being able to dig out all his musical influences is a testament to his skill.

ryo: Uki is very straight about his thoughts like: “this is definitely different” or “this isn’t nice at all.” (laughs) No need to think so much since he explains it very clearly.

Uki: As I’m a newcomer in terms of music, I don’t know what to say to get what I need so I fumble around while finding the right things to say.

ryo: You said that you like Sakanaction right?

Uki: Yes. While I do listen to music, I’m not a creator. Even while not knowing I keep thinking “what gives off the most Cenco feel?”…even though the one who’s actually doing the work is ryo. (laughs)

An adequate amount of style and looseness.

Just like the producer, were you able to grab a hold of “what’s Cenco”?

ryo: First of all, when I first receive the video with the lines and SFX added, what was “Cencoroll” to me was the tone of the voices, the atmosphere of the film, how the conversations between the characters told me they weren’t that close and how there’s a tsundere feel amongst them. It doesn’t make you laugh or cry, but at the same time it isn’t entirely cold. It’s straddling the lines amongst those three areas. You’ll laugh a bit, cry even a little bit as well, and that balance is what I feel is “Cencoroll.” But in the end, you’d feel: “Cenco is cute!” (laughs) When I saw Cencoroll Connect at the theatre, there was a stuffed toy of Cenco there. I saw a bunch of young girls call it “cute” while slapping it. Seeing that makes me think: “Cencoroll is just like that.

It’s cute but it’s okay to treat it roughly? (laughs)

ryo: Yes yes! (laughs) Also for Tsuritama (2012 anime, Uki was the character designer), while he didn’t make it, the exact same laid-back atmosphere you can feel from Uki is there. If there was a t-shirt made I’d have bought it. (laughs)

Uki, you have also designed the jackets for some of ryo’s songs such as Cumulonimbus Graffiti.

ryo: There’s an adequeate amounts of stylishness and looseness, and the whole is just abit of both it’s not too much. I feels like something a kid of today would make.

Uki: But I’m already forty years old. (laughs)

ryo: But even if I was sixty years old I’d still draw like a kid of today. I’d want to have a style that’s always current.

Source: Comic Natalie