Interview with Mori Katsura of Real x Head

Interview posted on June 7th, 2010 / 平成22年6月7日

Real x Head


A: When did you start to make toys?

M: 7 years ago.

A: Why did you start then?

M: Why?  I was always a toy collector.  I collected vinyl, and wanted to make my own.

A: What kind of toys did you collect?

M: Mostly Kaiju and Kamen Rider.

A: So after collecting, you wanted to make your own toys?

M: Yeah.

A: What was the first toy you made?

M: Oni Head.  This one (points to shelf).

A: Was it a Pachi Summit release?

M: No, it was released at Superfest.

A: Was it just you at Superfest, or were you part of a group there?

M: Just myself.

A: Sounds difficult.

M: You might say so, but not really (laughs).

A: Which came first, the Oni Head’s mohawk or your own?

M: Mine, mine.

A: Why did you start making toys?

M: I wanted to work at a toy company, but I couldn’t enter because I had only finished junior high school.  I wasn’t able to enter any of the big companies, so I decided to start by myself (laughs).

A: What kind of work did you want to do?

M: I just wanted to make toys, so anything would be great.

A: What was your inspiration to make toys?

M: Before making toys, I was making T-shirts, and because of that, I was interested in making anything original.  T-shirts are cheap to make, vinyl is more expensive, and it took more time to make toys.  So I made shirts while I saved money to make toys.

A: How many years did you make shirts?

M: About one year.

A: So one year making T-shirts, and then 7 years making toys?

M: That’s right.

A: Other than your own toys, what’s your favorite toy?

M: I don’t have a favorite.  Mine are my favorite (laughs).

A: Ofcourse!

M: Now, I don’t buy many toys.

A: What about when you were a child?

M: When I was a kid, I loved Kamen Rider.

A: Were you not interested in Kaiju as a kid?

M: I had some Kaiju, but I had way more Kamen Rider toys.

A: Who is your favorite toy maker?

M: Toy maker?

A: Yeah, artist, toy maker…

M: Hmm, who do I like…(long pause) no one.

A: Well, what about what toy maker would you like to work with.  Like a collaboration?

M: Hmm, I wonder…

A: For example, Skull Toys, Lamour Supreme…

M: I get to work with them all the time! (laughs) Dream first, no one comes to mind immediately.  But if I could design another company’s toy, I would like to try the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Yeah, definitely.  Not really a specific artist.

A: How long have you known Lamour?

M: For four years or so.

A: Where did you meet him?

M: Don (datadub) told me about him.  Showed me Lamour’s drawings, custom toys, and we traded.  That was when I first met Lamour.

A: How long have you known Don?

M: Six years.

A: Don was a toy fan of yours?

M: Yeah, he was.

A: When did you find out that your toys were popular in the US?

M: Around four years ago.

A: How did you find out?

M: I got a direct telephone order from the US.  I don’t have a PC, so I was really surprised.  I had no idea who the person was.  They heard about Real Head from my vinyl maker, and ordered.

A: How many toys shows in America have you been to?

M: I went to last year’s SDCC.  I’ve had a lot of US toy show exclusives, though.

A: How was SDCC different from Japanese toy shows?

M: The size is different.  SDCC was huge.  Japanese toy shows are usually one day only.  SDCC was 5 days or so.

A: How about toy fans.  How are American and Japanese toy fans different?

M: Japanese customers are typically shy.  I don’t know a lot of the American fans, but they always know my name, take pictures, bring presents.  I also get a lot of presents mailed to me from the US.  Japanese fans are a little more shy.

A: Yeah, I don’t think us Americans are all that shy.

M: Not at all.  But I like it.  It makes me happy.

A: There are several people in the US with Real Head tattoos.  What do you think of this?

M: It’s surprising, but I’m glad (laughs).

A: How about you?  Do you want a Real Head tattoo?

M: I wouldn’t get one (laughs). I make my own toys, so I have my own original drawings.  Just those are fine for me.

A: I guess so (laughs).  Do you know of any Japanese website similar to Skullbrain?

M: I don’t.  No PC, sorry.

A: Ah, I understand.  Recently, you’ve released the adult sized sculpt, and quite a few rub paint applications.  What have your fans’ reaction been?

M: At first, everyone loved the rub application, but now, it seems like more people want the simple free spray application.  That’s just the way the cycle works.

A: What was your first rub?

M: Chaos.

A: How about the adult sized sculpt?  What have your fans’ reception been compared to your normal sculpt size?

M: I’ve been selling the normal size for a while, and just started selling the adult size.  The normal size has been popular for 3 years or so, but I think the adult size will become equally as popular.  Maybe in about two years.

A: What’s your favorite Real Head toy?

M: Hmm, they’re all my favorite.  I like them all.

A: Ok, what if there’s a fire.  Which one do you save?

M: Hmm, If there’s a fire…I’d just make them again (laughs).

A: Good idea.  What’s your most popular character?

M: I bet Fortune Cat or Chaos.

A: What are the steps you take to make a toy?

M: Drawing first, sculpt and sculpt check, mold factory, vinyl factory, paint factory, make the packaging, then display.

A: How long does it take?

M: For a new character?  Two months.

A: Wow, fast.

M: So every month, I have a new character.

A: Really?  How about June?

M: Mini sized character.

A: Alright, that’s it.  Thank you very much.

M: Thank you.




M: 7 years ago.









A: Pachi Summitで?

M:いや、違う。 Superfestで。








M:おもちゃ会社に入りたっかたんだけど、俺入れないから、junior high schoolしか出てないから。大きいところは俺を取ってくれないから、 no welcomeだから、で、自分ではじめた。(笑)




M:ソフビ作る前は、Tシャツを作り出してたから、それでオリジナルの物を作るのが面白くなっちゃって。 Tシャツは安くできるけど、ビニルは高いから、ちょっと時間かかったけど。だから最初はTシャツからスタートして、お金をためて、作った。

A: Tシャツは何年間作りましたか?


















A:例えば、Skull Toys, Lamour Supreme…

M:それはいつでもできるから(笑)。ドリームとしてね、誰だろね。多分、すぐに、no first imageだから、多分いないね。ただ、自分でデザインとか、おもちゃをつくりたいのは、 Mutant Turtles。そうだね。アーティストは、べつに(いない)。

A: Lamourとは、いつ知りあったの?

M:多分、4 years ago.


M: Donがおしえてくれて。 Lamourdrawingして、俺が only one paintして、 tradeして、それが first.

A: Donはいつから?

M: 6 years.

A: Donはトイファンでしたか?



M:えっとね、四年前ぐらいかな、4 years ago

A: How?

M: Telephone order. Direct telephone order from the USA. Not PCだからびっくりしたよ。

ぜんぜんしらなかった。だれもおしえてくれなかった。  same vinyl maker, no announce, USA customer. 


M:俺が行ったのは、あの、きょねんのSDCCだけだけど。  exclusiveはもう、たくさんやったから、ちょっと覚えてないな.


M:やっぱりsimpleに言うと、大きさがぜんぜん違うし。 日本はだいたいone dayだから、日本のトイショーはone day onlyだけど、 あんなにも5 days…SDCC…maybe 5 days. あんなのないからね。


M: Japanese customerのほうね、shyだよね。アメリカのファンは俺のこと知らなくても、 first contactでも、ちゃんと名前で俺のこと呼ぶし、写真もとるし、 presentとかもってたり、アメリカから EMSdirectで送ってきたり。あまり日本の人は、、、ちょっと shyだな。





A:自分も、Real Headタトゥーがほしい?

M:自分はいれない。あはははは(笑)自分にはおもちゃがあるから、自分で書いた drawingあるから。 わざわざもここにつけなくても大丈夫。


M:しらない。Not PC, Sorry.

A: I understand ()。 最近、たくさんのAdult sculpturerubの(作品を出していますね)。ファンの reactionはどうですか?

M: Loveやりだしたfirst timeは、皆すごくあれだったけど、今はあまりこっちをやらなくなったから、こういう、simple free sprayのほうが欲しいんじゃないの。それはもう順番で、 Cycleでやっていくので。

A:はじめての rubは?

M: Chaos

A: Adult sizeは(普通のサイズの方とくらべて)人気が違いますか?

M:こっちのサイズは長いのを売ってるから、大きいサイズよりこっちよりも人気はある。けれど、こっちのサイズだって、 debut3年間くらい売れなかったわけだから。そういう意味では、たぶん、future thing. 今はもちろん。Time lagあるけど、maybe 2 years after. Same level. Maybe.





A: Good Idea () 一番人気のある自分のキャラクターは何ですか?

M: Fortune catChaosじゃない?Chaos or Fortune cat?


M: Drawing first, sculpt check, mold factory, vinyl factory, paint factory, packaging, display


M: New character? 2 months.


M:だからEvery month, new character.

A: Really?6月は?

M: Mini size.

A:じゃ、終わった。Thank you very much.

M: Thank you.