“Rei is still inside of me.”

Interview with Megumi Hayashibara as Rei Ayanami (tentative name) in EVANGELION:3.0+1.0 THRICE UPON A TIME.

May 22, 2021, 17:00

"Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time" is now in theaters.

We interviewed Megumi Hayashibara, who plays the role of Rei Ayanami (tentative name), about the final part of this work and the Evangelion series.

How did you feel when you saw the completed work?

At the time of the recording, we were already in the midst of the Covid-19 disaster, and we had been working on the recording of each scene separately since ":2.0" at Anno's request.

So I had no idea what was going on except for the scenes I was in until I watched the completed film.

I received the whole script, but it was only a written text.

For "Evangelion", I had no idea what the characters would look like, what kind of whirling, squishy things would look like, and what kind of light would shine through them.

Yes, that's right.

So, when I watched the completed film, I watched it as if I were a fan, as if I were someone who had been watching over everyone's battles.

I was simply happy to see the progress of Asuka, Misato, Shinji, and the others who had been fighting with us all this time.

Each character was spotlighted and saved, so it was worth watching.

Oh, the surprising scene about Rei Ayanami (tentative name) doing agriculture was digested during the postrecording (laughs).

I also wrote the song "The Fate of Gathering (集結の運命)" after ":2.0", when ":3.0" was barely formed, and when I listened to the song after watching ":3.0+1.0", there was a scary overlap with the content. I'm proud of it.

I wrote the lyrics, "The rudderless Ark sinks into the spiral structure of life," and I thought, " It' s Wunder!"

Mari had appeared in it, and the lyrics says, "It moves around the rules."

I was like, "Oh my god."

That's mysterious!

There's something about "Eva" that drives me, that I can't help but feel.

I'm not trying to say, "I'm amazing," but there's something about the whole thing that makes you feel as if every cell is involved.

Didn't the actors find it difficult to record in small parts?

We didn't all get together and record separately.

In this convenient age, we have an "Eva" LINE group.

We used "Eva" stamps to exchange casual things like "I recorded it today" or "I got a retake".

We were able to communicate in a way that we hadn't before with ":1.0", ":2.0" and ":3.0", and even more so, a way that we had never imagined when we were working on the TV series.

We can be a little kinder to each other when we communicate only through text.

Do you feel that the communication between actors outside the studio has become more active?

Yes, I do.

And it was very warm.

Everyone is a " war buddy".

We overcame the previous film project together.

From the TV series before that, we all threw as much as we could at Anno, who craved for material anyway, and we got exhausted and made a monster hit.

But by that time, the recording was finished, so I experienced the feeling of "What is everyone making a fuss about?"

When I went to an izakaya (Japanese pub), there was a lot of talk about "Eva" all around.

I feel that there are things that we can understand because we are friends who lived through those times together.

Do you feel that you have a better friendship with them than you did 25 years ago?

I don't know if it's better, but we've all grown up.

As a character, Kensuke has become a model case of how a camera boy should have grown up.

The characters and actors were all manipulated by the work without knowing what was going on, but they became adults.

"Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time" is a work that gives you a chance to experience the flow of time in two and a half hours.

Now that you've finished "Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time", how do you feel about Rei's existence? How do you feel about Rei?

During the TV series, The End of Evangelion, and Rebuild of Evangelion, the distance between my feelings and Rei's was different from what people imagine.

For example, if Rei came in first in some popularity contest, that was that, and if Asuka came in first, there was no question.

That said, it was also interesting to see how the characters were accepted.

At the time, a character like Rei was sensational because of her unparalleled impact.

However, after Rei, there were more and more similar characters, or to put it simply, quiet heroines.

That's why it's not so rare for people nowadays anymore.

That makes sense.

The influence of Evangelion on various genres such as manga, games, and novels, not to mention anime, was great.

Not only Rei, but when the work Evangelion drips even a drop of something, the ripples are far-reaching.

Maybe that's just the way it is with popular works, but no matter what, I'm not on the surface when the ripples spread like that.

I'm more under the water, in the place where the water doesn't move.

So, even after "Rebuild of Evangelion," I feel that I have finished a huge work, nothing more, nothing less.

Of course, I have feelings of sentiment, melancholy, and gratitude.

If I put it into words again, it may seem like a cold reaction.

No, not at all.

But to tell the truth, I'm feeling rather refreshed right now.

I think everyone involved in the previous film version had a little bit of a hard time understanding it.

Yuko Miyamura also said that she couldn't look back on it until many years had passed.

As for me, I feel that I dared to hurt something that I didn't need to hurt.

Maybe there were things I should have learned from those wounds, but I also wondered, "What are they for?"

This time, I feel that I have seen a very good " final " in the sense of throwing entertainment to the world.

However, even though this has happened, Rei still exists in my mind.

If someone says to me, "I'm going to make a digest version of 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0," and there are some new recordings, I'm going to synchronize with Rei at that point.

So, it took me a long time to answer, but if you ask me what kind of existence Ray is, I don't know for sure (laughs).

It's a character that took me a long time to manage, but that doesn't explain her enough.

<Original JP site: https://webnewtype.com/report/article/1033822/>