I was also among those people who rejoiced when SM Cinemas finally decided to show the first RK movie two years ago. While it didn't strictly follow the anime and manga, I felt the vibe that it needed to be a great movie adaptation. It was of course thanks to the actors who did their best giving justice to their respective characters.
When it was announced last week that the cast and director of Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno would be visiting the country this week and a lot of contests were held giving away free event passes at the red carpet premiere, I tried my luck in joining all them, hoping that I will get the chance to meet Takeru Satoh, Emi Takei, Munetaka Aoki and director Keishi Otomo.
Alas, I didn't win in any of the contests, and even if I did, work got in the way. That is why I filed a vacation leave for yesterday to see the press conference itself. And during the weekend, I prepared something I had long been wanting to do: my costume for Yūkyūzan Anji, member of the Juppongatana and mentor to Sanosuke Sagara.
I also bought second-hand clothes from a surplus shop to complete my getup. It was a good thing that I only had to do some cutting to complete my attire; I wanted to make it look as rugged as possible, and I think I achieved that.
My idea was to be part of the audience and dress up as Anji during the presscon. My buddy Ricki had the same idea and brought his costume for Uonuma Usui, another member of the Juppongatana and the blind master of the Shingan, the "eyes of the heart".
We went to Glorietta as early as 9AM in order to be among the first in line to get the limited event passes. Our plan was that Ricki will go in line for the purchase of the movie tickets while I go purchase something worth P1,000 for both of us. I bought a Nintendo eShop card that covered our receipt requirement.
We were the only ones in the audience bold enough to bring costumes and wear them at the presscon, when all the rest would be bringing out posters, hand-made drawings, books, toys and other memorabilia.
We seemed out of place from where we were in the audience when we donned out costumes; we were met with the usual judgmental eyes, particularly from some fangirls. I guess these kinds of people will never understand our way of appreciating this fandom.
Then came a time that media representatives from Rappler, Hero TV and Japan's Fuji TV asked to interview us. Of course, we wouldn't let those few minutes of fame slip away.
Minutes later, it was time for the event to begin. The Philippine All-Stars kickstarted the program with their flashy opening number, followed by a masterful swordsmanship demonstration from Shinkendo Philippines. Jin and company wrapped up the opening number with their cosplay portrayal of some of characters from the movie.
The ovation grew louder when each of the trio greeted the audience in Filipino.
Yes, this was the closest we could get to the stage.
I just hated the fact that some of the questions asked to them were stupid and not thought of deeply, like "What will be your career path after this movie?", and Pinoy-Pride-fueling, like the usual "How is your stay in the Philippines?" One question that was really amusing was the very first one where the asker asked Takeru what the similarities and differences are between his role in the movie as Kenshin Himura and his previous and also notable role as Kamen Rider Den-O.
Before the presscon concluded, Takeru gave his parting message to everyone in attendance, and here was his message as translated by his interpreter:
And because of all the RK fever, I bit my tongue while eating dinner.