Nobuhiko Okamoto-san actively participates in activities other than acting, showing a new face each time. Combined with the wide range of characters he plays; he is an entertainer who always surprises and entertains his fans. This time, we asked him to talk a lot about his most recent work.
Asking about the sequel “Touken Ranbu Hanamaru” and “Hakyuu Hoshin Engi”. Okamoto: The sequel “Touken Ranbu Hanamaru” is a work that is everyday, and everyone is friendly, so it was easy to do the part about “I can’t remember the name of Genji’s brother sword.” It’s just that it’s difficult to balance the animation with my voice. The character’s face is deformed and looks angry, but I paid attention to small nuances such as not to overdo it.
The ending “Ten to Koyomi” of the first episode sung by the brothers Higekiri and Hisamaru was cool. Okamoto: I thought it was great that we were able to sing together. I have had many opportunities to perform duets with Natsuki Hanae-san, and since he sings really well, I feel like he’s pulling me in.
How about “Hakyuu Hoshin Engi.” Okamoto: From the start of my audition, I knew I wanted to play Otenkun. He has a tragic past and is a character that can be paired with the main character’s ambitions.
How does it feel to be appearing in a movie that you watched as a child, following “Mahoujn Guru Guru?” Okamoto: When there was an event for Guru Guru, Aki Okui-san sang the ending song for the previous anime, “Wind Climbing ~ Kaze ni Asabarete~.” I was so moved that I remembered many such things, such as watching anime in the evening and singing a lot when I was a junior high school student. You could say it was an advantage to be able to listen to a nostalgic song up close (laughs), and it felt special. When I was asked to stand in a place that I’m very thankful for, I was overwhelmed. I’ve been reading the manga “Houshin Engi” for a long time, and I’m happy that there are many remakes recently, it’s nice.
“March comes in like a Lion’s S2” will end in March. Okamoto: This is also a work that I read as a fan, and I’m happy to be able to appear again. However, as much as I love shogi, it’s difficult for me to read the game record aloud. But in “Ryuo no Oshigoto!” it’s hard to tell the difference.
“Ryuo no Oshigoto!” Okamoto: The main character’s rival role, he’s hot-headed. A bit like Nikaido, but Kannabe is an existence that has the middle two diseases (laughs). This is a shogi game drawn in a fantasy style, and there are hot battles in it. What surprised me about “Ryuo” was Hiroki Notsuki, 8th Dan, who was on site as a shogi supervisor. He was my shogi teacher when I was in elementary school, and I was very happy to meet him again. I graduated from the Shogi school at the first dan, and my name is on the certificate of graduation.
How about a character like Kannabe who is a 2nd year psychic? Okamoto: It’s fun for me personally. It’s fun to express a realistic drama with my voice, but I’m currently facing the challenge of how realistically I can express an unrealistic world and whether the audience can enjoy it as entertainment. I think the real pleasure of being a voice actor is being able to act in a way that is unique to anime.
Please tell us about “Nil Admirari no Tenbin” starting in April. Okamoto: It’s a suspenseful story about a group known as owls solving a strange incident, and Akira Kougami, who I play, is one of the members. I’m looking forward to seeing how Akira will be portrayed in the anime.
“Oka” broadcasted on January 1 where you climbed Mt. Fuji. Give us your thoughts. Okamoto: It was really hard. I was confident in my physical strength, but I was still tired. But it was fun. The expression of the mountains, the scenery changes all the time, the clouds are right there, and it feels like the unreal world is right there. As a price, I think it’s hard to climb in a situation where there is almost no oxygen. Although it was difficult, I felt a great sense of accomplishment, and being able to climb the mountain while talking with Yuki Kaji-san was a great experience. I didn’t get altitude sickness. The descent was particularly difficult. The climb was impressive, but the descent was boring (laughs).
You are very active; how do you relieve stress? Okamoto: Meat and chocolate. Even at Mt. Fuji, eating Snickers made me feel better (laughs). But Toshiyuki Morikawa-san told me that there was going to be a battle. When I think of people in the voice acting industry who like meat, I think of Morikawa-san and Kousuke Toriumi-san, but both of them eat mostly vegetables and don’t eat much meat. It was quite a shock. That’s why I want to show my juniors how I eat meat (laughs).
You want to inherit the name of Meat-senpai (laughs). Okamoto: I want to take over. I think I go to yakiniku restaurants the most in the voice acting industry. But when I go to a yakiniku restaurant, I try to order a salad too!
Do you have a message for your fans? Okamoto: It seems that the theme of this issue is “a new self,” and the reason why “Okamo Travel” was able to be produced as a program is based on the human relationships that I built in my twenties. Thanks to the help of the people I met, the project took shape. I think there are many young people among those who read “Voice Newtype.” If you take the initiative to start something new, I feel that it will lead to something in the future, so please try many new things.
Column: New myself
Looking to the future, I want to start playing golf. I don’t think I’ll be able to play badminton when I’m in my 60’s… even now my knees are stiff (laughs). Some seniors in the voice acting industry also started playing gold, so I can have a common topic with them, killing two birds with one stone!