Sam Koji Hale and Shoji Kameda: Yamasong’s Masters of Puppets

Last month, we brought you the trailer and poster for the upcoming fantasy film Yamasong: March of the Hollows. The film, which is a follow-up to a 2010 short, seeks to bring puppetry back to mainstream genre audiences with an all-star cast and backing from a couple of dynastic names in the world of cinematic puppetry.

On the latest edition of Hard NOC Life, Keith sits down with the two men who launched the world of Yamasong half a decade ago: writer-director Sam Koji Hale and composer Shoji Kameda.

Topics covered on the show include:

  • The role On Ensemble’s music played in creating the world of the original Yamasong short
  • The influence of bunraku and other forms of puppetry on the style of Yamasong
  • How Sam became drawn to using puppetry as a mode of storytelling
  • Heather Henson’s role in supporting the Yamasong short and Sam’s career
  • The difference between having a short film created around Shoji’s music and having to create music to score the full-length film.
  • Bringing in novelist Ekaterina Sedia to work on the screenplay for the feature
  • Working with an all-star cast of nerd-friendly actors such as Nathan Fillion, Whoopi Goldberg, George Takei, Malcolm McDowell, and more
  • Whether puppetry should be considered live action or animation and the differences between practical and computer-generated effects
  • All this and more on Hard NOC Life! Watch it on your screen, hit “play,” and check this.

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