For one of our trips out in part of Kyoto we went to Toei Kyoto Studio Park. It’s a mix between a theme park and a film studio ^^
The theme park is essentially a large open air film set, that’s still used to film period dramas starring Samurai and Ninjas :)
There are lots of different buildings that you can walk around, and some you can go in…..at times it feels like you’ve travelled back in time ;P
There are some attractions which sound interesting, but we couldn’t go in them because of the loooong queues of school students ^_^; …..things such as the Ninja training grounds, and the haunted house.
There are usually some actors walking around dressed in full period costume, and at certain times through the day there are some mini shows outside, such as a sword fight which then has audience participation at the end for kids to have a choreographed fight against one of the Samurai, and then a photo op with the actors.
There are a couple of shows held inside 2 of the larger buildings.
The first we saw was a behind the scenes demonstration of how a scene may be directed, and some of the simple yet effective techniques used to enhance the action :)
There was some great physical comedy thrown in as well ;)
The second show we saw was a Ninja show, which is acted out on a stage, off the stage, and all around the stage :P
The show was really good, with some cool fight moves and a back-lit set providing background changes that the actors interacted with :)
At one point the demon guards searching for the hiding hero called out a couple of kids from the audience and gave them a memorable experience ;P
On site is also the Toei Animation Museum, which has lots of popular characters displayed as models, pictures, and toys.
They also have a couple of booths where you can try out voice acting to a couple of scenes from anime series ;)
The last attraction we went to see here was Hero Land, which is a pretty large collection of costumes (and a few props) from various Japanese super hero / super team shows; such as Kamen Rider and Power Rangers.
I’ve seen some of these shows on TV before, and it’s interesting to be able to look at the details on the costumes up close…..but it feels like they might suddenly move at any moment ;>.>
If you’re lucky while you’re here, you might also get to make friends with one of the local Ninjas ;)