[TRANS] 070715 Kiko Mizuhara’s interview for Cinema Cinema Magazine

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In the “Keypoint” section, Kiko describes interesting characterizations for Mikasa in the films:

CHARACTER (Left part)

“It is obvious that Mikasa is a beautiful woman as a heroine, but what is also attractive is her extraordinary strength. Even when Mikasa causes herself to become wounded all over, she still wants to protect those important to her – I think this is her most powerful characteristic. But in order to let go of what happened in the past, one has no choice but to become strong. To me Mikasa holds a very generous type of love, and she seems like a Saint – to protect people even if she must sacrifice herself. There is a moment when she totally seems like she is protecting her own child. If you watch her closely, there will be an instant when you easily regard her as a strong woman.”

LIVE (Middle part)

“I feel that in the first film, Mikasa is just killing Titans dispassionately according to what Shikishima tells her. She never disobeys Shikishima’s words, and I think she simply wants to meet Shikishima’s expectations of her. But coming up in the second film, ever since a specific moment, Mikasa changes her thoughts to fight for her friends and comrades.”

WALL (Right part)

“When Mikasa finds out that Eren wants to go beyond the walls, she is a little bit worried because we don’t know what things outside the wall look like and whether they are good or not. But there is also a “girlish” side of her thinking ‘Maybe there will also be beautiful and wonderful things outside, just like what Eren says?”
(Translations by suniuz)

 

MAIN INTERVIEW
(Translated by suniuz & edited by mika)

Long Limbs are a Hindrance?! Days that are the Opposite of Reality

Kiko: To be honest, I used to have zero interest in manga in general, but the exception came in the form of Shingeki no Kyojin, because everyone around me kept saying that it was quite interesting and told me, “I think you might change your mind and you should try to read it!” At the beginning of the manga, the brushstrokes were masculine. Somehow I felt terrified and thought “Hmmmm,“ but I did consider it very interesting after I finished reading! Isayama-sensei delivered his energy through his drawings, which caused me to think “It’s intense!” and gave me deep understanding of the impacts generated by every context. I was even being a bit conceited and had a vague idea that if it could be adapted into a film, I would like to play the role of Mikasa. Therefore, when it became reality, I was really happy, but I also knew very well that there would be criticisms towards me. I told myself, “For sure it will be like that.” (laughs) I used to get bitter after receiving negative comments and often became discouraged by my worries. But now I have learned to gratefully accept approval from people I respect. Director Higuchi is a person with a great personality. Instead of saying “This is not right.” when I did something wrong, he praised me with extreme kindness and showed me approval. As a result, I gained confidence and became able to trust myself. I learned to switch my modes and may have become bolder than before. (laughs) The only thing I think about now is how I have to strive to accomplish what I am capable of doing.

The appeal of Mikasa is that there is a looming feeling where her strengths and her faltering fragility are about to collapse on each other. I told myself that if I would like to express her characteristics, I have to dedicate myself to building a fit physique! Though I actually lost some weight during the filming instead (cries), thanks to my personal fitness trainer, I did strict exercise routines for two months. I happened to have the same trainer as Ishihara (The actress of Hanji) did, but the trainer was especially like a Spartan to me (laughs). Nevertheless, my body transformed a little bit because of it. It was such an amazing training period. I did particularly intense exercises on my waist. Since the 3DMG was attached to it, and I used that part of body every time when I landed on the ground. In the original manga, Mikasa has clear-cut abs but I didn’t reach that level! Although I pushed myself to the very limits (laughs), I didn’t have enough time to build the abs I desired.

This is my first time participating in an action movie, so it’s full of things that I didn’t quite understand. Initially, I started from practicing basic forms of “defending attacks” in the action studio, but all of a sudden I was told “now try to do it by yourself.” I was like “uhh..?! Where should I put my hands? I can’t do it.” But I still tried to do it after all, and the staff laughed, saying “You keep knocking yourself over (snickers).” I must have been considered silly (laughs). After that, no matter what I did, I was told “no no, not like that” and I felt very frustrated. But everyone helped me patiently, even though they were dedicating much of their lives into the work. They wholeheartedly taught the incapable me, and thus I felt I was somehow given strength. I personally did not hate doing sports, but I am still not a frequent visitor to gyms, so it was very hard for me in many ways at first. After all, I’m not in the best shape for action projects – because my legs and arms are long, my arms stretched like “Swish!” whenever I landed on the ground. It’s such a clumsy gesture! Perhaps the position looks better to a model, but in an action movie it would definitely be an awesome thing if you can control your body well and stop moving so precisely. When I first saw my movements on the screen, I asked myself, “Why do I look so miserable?” But everyone else said “Why are you so slender?” So gradually I stopped feeling frustrated, and made progress day by day while I kept myself chained to reality. Even using the wirework stunts was quite difficult for me. I previously experienced wire stunts in an advertisement when I was performing as the “Fairy of Dam” (laughs), but it cannot be compared with the real one here! I’ve never watched the old advertisement, but now I would like to see it at some time (laughs).

(T/N: This is the ad she is talking about)

Speaking objectively, having the honor to participate in such a great ;project seems so amazing to me! It feels unrealistic to me, an ordinary person who lives an ordinary life until now. Regarding the depiction of Titans, I actually laughed during the overly terrifying scenes of Hell (laugh). My mother was like “I can’t stand it~!” whereas I was feeling “Thank God I’m alive.” I am pretty sure I have never seen any movie so dreadful as this one. As expected, it’s a great work by Director Higuchi! Especially when I saw the director, the stunt team, and the staff who made those stunning costumes and stage sets. All these people worked with the utmost effort, and I cannot not say anything but thank them. I knew that if I didn’t do my best, all these efforts would be in vain. So I became very determined, like “Do or Die!” During the casting, it was alright, but when it came to the actual filming we had to pretend to fight with the non-existent Titans and make eye contact with each other. It couldn’t be achieved if you didn’t utilize your imagination to its maximum. I think I can say that only we can do it (laughs). It wouldn’t be possible if we didn’t take this challenge with the collective effort from our team. Originally, I wasn’t a fan of encouraging slogans such as “Everyone unite and fight together!” (laughs) I used to consider it a little bit embarrassing. But even though the film set was filled with exactly this kind of atmosphere, I actually enjoyed it a lot and felt blessed to see all aspects of the people involved. At the end of filming, it was a little bit sad, but indeed I also felt that “I made it.” I am now wondering if I performed Mikasa successfully.

Translated from:
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