An Interview with Komatsu Sakyô

The web archives of the Science Fiction Studies journal are full of fascinating articles, and here is a 2002 interview with Japanese writer Komatsu Sakyô.

From the introduction: Komatsu Sakyô (pen name of Komatsu Minoru) was born in Osaka, Japan on January 28, 1931. With Tsutsui Yasutaka and Hoshi Shin’ichi, Komatsu is one of the “Three Greats” who formed the first generation of Japanese sf as it developed after the war, particularly during the later 1950s. Today he is one of Japanese sf’s most important authors.

When the publishing house Hayakawa Shobô started SF Magazine in 1959, they held a contest, the Hayakawa Science Fiction Competition. I sent in the story “Pacem in Terris,” and that was the beginning. The sponsor who provided the prize money was the Tôhô movie studio, which produced Gojira [1954, Godzilla, 1956]. The condition was that Tôhô would retain the movie rights to the winning story. That first year of the contest, I received an Honorable Mention and 5000 yen. The second year I shared the prize with Hanmura Ryô, who later won the Naoki Prize. We each got 30,000 yen from Tôhô, and I felt so obligated [laughs] that in 1973 when we were discussing a film version of Japan Sinks, I gave them the movie rights with almost no conditions. I think they paid 1.5 million yen.Read the rest of the interview.

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