Weathering with You, directed and written by Makoto Shinkai, has caught the anime community and world by storm. Originally premiering in Japan this past 19 July 2019, the film is slated to hit US and Canadian theaters on 17 January 2019 after a limited fan screening in select theaters on the 15th and 16th. We had the special opportunity to hear from RADWIMPS as they share their thoughts on Weathering with You.
Congratulations on another successful album for Weathering with You! How were you asked to write the music again for Makoto Shinkai’s film, Weathering with You and what was your initial reaction?
Noda: To be honest, I wasn’t expecting to get an offer to compose the score again, so I was surprised. I received the script about a year after Your Name was released.
I was asked, “After reading the script, did you think of any music?” A few months later, I handed the director two of the main songs.
Given the popularity of the Your Name OST, did you feel pressured to top your previous effort when composing for Weathering with You?
Kuwahara: Compared to last time, the process was smoother because of the trust we built with Director Shinkai. But there were just so many pieces to compose, so we had a lot more work, lol. We didn’t feel pressure, but it was more like, “We’ll do our best to get the work done!”
During specific scenes throughout Weathering with You, the anime film story development aligned with the soundtrack . How was the coordination like with the animation production? What materials were you given to work with while composing the album for Weathering with You?
Takeda: We were careful in how we matched the music to the visuals. But the director also changed his visuals to match our music too. The visuals and music both matched and inspired each other, and it turned out to be a true collaboration.
For the soundtrack Grand Escape ft. Toko Miura, RADWIMPS took a background role for the vocals. The song is a pivotal part of the show and embodies an incredible range of emotions. Could you talk about the creative process behind composing the song and how did you get Toko Miura-san involved with the song?
Noda: When I first got the offer to work on this film, I thought that I don’t necessarily have to sing. That’s why I told Mr. Shinkai and Mr. Kawamura (the producer) that I’ll compose the score bit if there are songs, I would like a woman to sing it and would like to find that singer. In this film, Hina is unique, so I sought someone who can sing Hina’s soul, and also someone who can sing how Hodaka felt with Hina’s voice.
For the scene that plays Grand Escape, where Hodaka goes to save Hina, the director had a piece of more mellow music in mind.
But for a year, I was thinking that something was missing. That I needed a powerful sound, that the energy Hodaka has to save Hina isn’t this soft. From there, I came up with the current arrangement with the chorus.
Toko had a powerful voice.
There’s this interview from 2017 where Takeda-san expressed that his favourite, “goosebump” moment from Your Name was when the song Sparkle came on somewhere near the end of that movie. What would be your Sparkle-equivalent moment from Weathering with You?
Takeda: I love the scene at the end when “Daijobu” starts playing. It gives me goosebumps every time I see it.
RADWIMPS also accredited for other non-vocal soundtracks for the film including Running with Hina, an orchestra version of Is There Still Anything That Love Can Do. How did this come about and what was the recording process like for the non-vocal OST?
Takeda: We watched the video storyboard as we composed music to help with the emotions of the audience, who will eventually view the film.
RADWIMPS’ Is There Still Anything That Love Can Do? and Grand Escape made it to the top of Anime Trending’s Shuffle Charts. Any comments to fans across the world who supported your songs?
Takeda: We’re very grateful. I would be happy if this film could entice emotions that provide energy in the audiences’ everyday lives. Please watch the movie. Thank you.
Special thanks to GKIDS for the opportunity.
GKIDS describes the Weathering with You as:
The summer of his high school freshman year, Hodaka runs away from his remote island home to Tokyo, and quickly finds himself pushed to his financial and personal limits. The weather is unusually gloomy and rainy every day, as if to suggest his future. He lives his days in isolation, but finally finds work as a writer for a mysterious occult magazine. Then one day, Hodaka meets Hina on a busy street corner. This bright and strong-willed girl possesses a strange and wonderful ability: the power to stop the rain and clear the sky…