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The Only Roles To Remain The Same In Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan's Island

"Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan's Island" is the rare anime film that manages to balance being something entirely new while faithfully paying homage to its past. Much of that is thanks to its initial origin as a mysterious episode from the original "Mobile Suit Gundam" series that a lot of the world never saw. Per Anime News Network, the popular story surrounding "Cucuruz Doan's" banishment from Western eyes is due to the poor animation quality. But at its core, the plot, which focuses on Amuro and White Base becoming stranded on an island with a deadly Zaku pilot and a host of war orphans, feels like a quintessential "Gundam" story.

For that reason, the "Cucuruz Doan's Island" movie dazzles with its fantastic battles and overall gorgeous animation. But at the same time, it also feels like a nostalgic time slip to the late '70s. That familiar feeling also extends to the voice acting. Many of the cast are new actors filling in established roles. And some, such as Cucuruz Doan (Shunsuke Takeuchi), may as well be regarded as entirely new since the movie is the first introduction to the character for many. However, when it comes to three particular roles in "Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan's Island," some things remained the same.

The roles of Amuro, Kai, and Char didn't change

"Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan's Island" contains a lot of new blood acting in the roles of beloved characters. However, when it comes to some of the series' most memorable, a few veteran actors reprised their roles. Per a translated interview on QooApp, movie director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko noted that "Mobile Suit Gundam Cucuruz Doan's Island" features staple "Gundam" voice actors Toru Furuya, Toshio Furukawa, and Shûichi Ikeda. In "Mobile Suit Gundam," Furuya, Furukawa, and Ikeda voiced Amuro Ray, Kai Shiden, and Char Aznable, respectively.

It's not the first time the trio has revised their original roles from the series. The three actors could be heard in the 2018 OVA, "Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin VI-Rise of the Red Comet." Collectively, if not in "Gundam," anime fans have likely heard their voices elsewhere through some of anime's biggest shows. The three have even traded voicing characters that fight in space for those that sail along the high seas in "One Piece." Per Behind The Voice Actors, Furuya has voiced the character Sabo, Ikeda has voiced Shanks, and Furukawa has voiced Portgas D. Ace. And hardcore fans may notice that all of their "One Piece" characters have some significant link to the main hero Luffy.

The movie once again reunites the actors with director Yasuhiko

Original voice actors weren't the only way "Mobile Suit Gundam: Cucuruz Doan's Island" pulls from "Mobile Suit Gundam." As surprising as the initial reveal of the "Cucuruz Doan's Island" cast was, it was even more of a shock that "Mobile Suit Gundam" animation director Yoshikazu Yasuhiko was also stepping in as film director. That reunited him again with Furuya, Furukawa, and Ikeda, but that doesn't mean the last time they all told the story of the "One Year War" was through the first anime. They all worked together on the "Mobile Suit: Origin" OVAs, as Yasuhiko served as director (via IMDb). In fact, if not for him, the "Mobile Suit: Origin" OVAs wouldn't even exist. He's also the creator of the manga that spawned them.

Throughout the manga, Yasuhiko is afforded the time and resources to expand on details the original anime probably skipped. And that seemed to become a significant reason for him to approach Sunrise and re-do the "Cucuruz Doan's Island" episode as a movie. As told in an interview with Forbes, a different team other than the main one worked on the episode, resulting in its infamously horrible animation. But its story has always stuck with the director throughout the years (via QooApp). And so, much like he with the "Origin" manga, a part of "Mobile Suit Gundam" got some more deserved care.