• Voice Actors of "Demon Slayer" Assemble! Hashira Training Arc: "There Are Many Favorite Scenes and Lines"
Japan Anime News Edit by Taimu Tsuji

Voice Actors of "Demon Slayer" Assemble! Hashira Training Arc: "There Are Many Favorite Scenes and Lines"

At AnimeJapan 2024, held on the 23rd at Tokyo Big Sight, the "Demon Slayer" stage was set. It kicked off with energetic cheers from Tanjiro Kamado, Nezuko, Zenitsu Agatsuma, and Inosuke Hashibira, starting the "TV Anime 'Demon Slayer' Special Stage!"

AnimeJapan 2024 "Demon Slayer" Special Stage Group Photo (C) Koyoharu Gotouge / Shueisha, Aniplex, ufotable

AnimeJapan 2024 "Demon Slayer" Special Stage Group Photo (C) Koyoharu Gotouge / Shueisha, Aniplex, ufotable

The voice actors, including Natsuki Hanae (Tanjiro Kamado), Akari Kitō (Nezuko Kamado), Hiro Shimono (Zenitsu Agatsuma), and Yoshitsugu Matsuoka (Inosuke Hashibira), received a thunderous welcome from the audience. This appearance marked the first ensemble of the cast since the "Demon Slayer Festival" celebrating the 5th anniversary of the anime "Demon Slayer." They delighted the audience with their iconic lines.

Hiro Shimono, taking the role of MC with his high energy, introduced "Zenitsu's Favorite Moment Today AnimeJapan Special Edition," featuring a dice with themes written on it, such as memories from the world tour, the Demon Slayer Festival, the 5th anniversary of the anime, and looking back over these five years. The cast rolled the dice, and Shimono announced the talk theme to the camera, followed by the audience echoing the catchphrase, starting a dice talk show reminiscent of a popular household program.

First, Shimono rolled the dice and landed on "Memories of the World Tour." "We went to New York, but the excitement was incredible everywhere else too. How many places did you visit, Hanae?" asked Shimono. Hanae replied, "I started in New York, then Singapore, Jakarta, Paris, London, and next up are Mumbai and Bangkok. It's more than last year." The audience expressed surprise at this revelation.

Matsuoka joked about Hanae's busy schedule, to which Hanae responded, "You make time," eliciting laughter from the audience. Shimono reflected on his New York debut, marveling at the international popularity of "Demon Slayer" and the passion of each fan, "It made me realize just how much 'Demon Slayer,' including its characters and voice actors, is loved worldwide."

Then, Hanae spoke about "Memories of the Demon Slayer Festival," mentioning, "The event was packed with activities, so I knew I had to be prepared. The sets and stage props were enhanced, and there were more secret guests than announced performers (laughs). Streaming has also started." Matsuoka recalled the moment Noriaki Sugiyama appeared, bringing screams of excitement from the audience.

Moreover, Hanae expressed his delight in seeing a balloon of Zenitsu's Thunder Breathing, historical eye-catch illustrations, and wished those posters were for sale, highlighting the charm of the significant Demon Slayer Festival that allows fans to enjoy five years of "Demon Slayer" in one go.

Kitō touched upon memorable scenes and acting from the Swordsmith Village Arc, "Nezuko's conquering of the sun was a remarkable moment. Everything came together beautifully." Shimono also reminisced, "The way Nezuko kicks Tanjiro, and the smile on his face from that point, it's unforgettable." They reflected on the profound sibling bond that captures the hearts of fans.

Hanae shared, "Seeing Nezuko fight only demons after landing and going into battle was a testament to their bond. It was a culmination of everything we've been through together. After making the ultimate decision following the struggle, tears naturally flowed."

Matsuoka, when asked about his aspirations for 2024 in light of the Hashira Training Arc, immediately answered "Mental strength." "I haven't been in a slump recently, but I used to ride the wave of good and bad times every three months. After the bad times, I'd become 'Perfect Matsuoka.' Recently, I've found myself in a slump again, so mental strength was what came to mind," he revealed, sharing his thoughts.

The cast offered Matsuoka words of encouragement, with Shimono saying, "If anything happens, you have us!" showcasing the perfect combination of the "Demon Slayer" cast during their lively dice talk session.

Approximately two months before the broadcast, the first PV for "TV Anime 'Demon Slayer' Hashira Training Arc," starting May 12 (Sunday) at 23:15 on Fuji TV nationwide, was shown. With the Hashira Training Arc soon to air, Hanae expressed his excitement, "As depicted in the visual, with so many Pillars present and some who haven't appeared much until now coming into play, I'm looking forward to watching it as a fan."

In closing, Hanae thanked the audience, "Thank you for gathering today! The Hashira Training Arc is about to start, and even reading the original work, there are many scenes and lines I love. While voicing Tanjiro and being curious about how others are acting and how it all comes together visually, I've recorded each line with Tanjiro in mind. Please look forward to the broadcast. Thank you for your continued support of 'Demon Slayer'!" The special stage ended amidst a round of vigorous applause.