The Curse of Crayon Shin-chan

IMG_0613“Ballad: Namonaki Koi no Uta” is a new Japanese movie that has opened this month in cinemas, and is taking reasonably good returns. It’s unusual in that it’s a live action samurai-period movie that also features one of Japan’s best-loved cartoon characters, the obnoxious little brat called Crayon Shin-chan. It’s also notable for a much darker, somber reason; the film appears to be … cursed.
The timeline of bizarre events in the film’s production goes like this. In October 2008, location filming on the island of Kyushu is hit by bad weather, resulting in tractors and bulldozers required to ferry samurai and their horses through the mud (an image that would make a good movie in itself).
November 2008: Shinichi Yokoyama, an employee of the film production company, is seriously injured in an explosion when mixing gunpowder at his house-cum-factory in Shibuya, Tokyo. The gunpowder was scheduled to be used as ammunition for the actors’ muskets. Yokoyama’s wife and mother are killed in the explosion.
April 2009: The star of the movie, actor and singer Tsuyoshi Kusanagi from superstar boy-band SMAP, is arrested after being found drunk, disorderly, and naked in a park in Roppongi, Tokyo. Police reported he had no memory or explanation for his actions.
September 2009: Yoshihito Usui, the creator of the Crayon shin-chan manga, goes missing in the mountains between Gunma and Nagano prefectures. His body was found September 20th at the bottom of a cliff, and an autopsy showed he appeared to have accidentally fallen to his death. Even more macabre is that the last photo in his camera is of a view looking down from the top of the cliffside path – it appears he was in the process of taking the photo when he slipped and fell.
A curse? Or a bizarre chain of unlikely coincidences?
You decide.

About J P Catton

Speculative storytelling and skewed fiction: the blog and website of author John Paul Catton.
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4 Responses to The Curse of Crayon Shin-chan

  1. Phill Evans says:

    Weird even for Nippon! LOL The photo looking over the edge…man mixing gunpowder in own house… sounds like a movie for the Darwin awards!!

  2. J P Catton says:

    Yes it does doesn’t it! But the guy was an experienced climber, and the FX guy was fully licensed to work with explosives (PS my wife Minako actually saw the smoke from her office window).

    The guy exposing himself in the park though was totally out of character because he’s the quiet one in the group. But like they say . . . beware the quiet ones . . .


  3. Ron says:

    I had a shin chan keychain brought from a hospital. Weird things happened lately…my car was smashed in the side by an unknown car, parent’s divorced, failed my exams, broke up with gf…I threw it over the fence and my neighbour’s family split up and deported to the UK. The shin chan keychain is cursed.

  4. J P Catton says:

    Hmm. Thanks for your post, Ron. I suggest that you seal the keychain in cement and then drop it into the nearest active volcano. I hope the curse never darkens your doorstep again, and I recommend you to came back soon and check out the latest posts!

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