Shinji Higuchi

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Shinji Higuchi (Japanese: 樋口真嗣), born September 22, 1965, Tokyo, is a writer, director, storyboard artist and a prominent special effects figure in Japanese film and television. As a teenager he was one of the four founding members of Gainax (originally established as Daicon Films), working on many anime and tokusatsu productions. He played an important part in the creation of the popular anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion, serving as writer, assistant director, and art director/storyboarder. His previous work on the anime Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water led the show's director and fellow Gainax member Hideaki Anno to name Evangelion's protagonist, Shinji Ikari after him as an inside joke. Higuchi initially started his career in the mid 80s working within special effects on several kaiju films, and by the mid 90's had established himself as a master within the field with the release of the acclaimed Gamera trilogy of films. During this time, he continued to be a storyboarder for anime such as Gunbuster and Otaku no Video, his wife also providing the namesake for the former's heroine, Noriko Takaya.

In addition to his special effects direction, Higuchi branched into CG animation for several tokusatsu films in the early 2000s, and has since directed a number of live-action films. Higuchi became involved within the Pokémon franchise during the production of Jirachi: Wish Maker as a storyboard artist in 2004. He was later commissioned to produce the artwork for the new Pokémon LEGEND cards that first appeared in the HeartGold & SoulSilver expansion of the Pokémon Trading Card Game, and went on to co-illustrate all subsequent Pokémon LEGEND cards released in the HeartGold & SoulSilver Series. He was also involved in the art direction of two cards from the Undaunted expansion in collaboration with 3D illustrator Kent Kanetsuna.


Cards illustrated

Cards directed



Title Date Position
The Return of Godzilla 1984 Assistant Special Effects Director
Yamata no Orochi no Gyakushū 1985 Special Effects Director
Peacock King 1988 Special Effects
Mikadroid: Robokill Beneath Disco Club Layla 1991 Special Effects Director
Gamera: Guardian of the Universe 1995 Special Effects Director
Gamera 2: Advent of Legion 1996 Special Effects Director
Gamera 3: Awakening of Irys 1999 Special Effects Director
Sakuya: Slayer of Demons 2000 Special Effects
Pistol Opera 2001 Special Effects
Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack 2001 Special Effects Director
The Princess Blade 2001 Special Effects Coordinator
Minimoni ja Movie: Okashi na Daibōken! 2002 Director
Dragonhead 2003 Special Effects
Kill Bill: Vol. 1 2003 Production Coordinator: Tokyo
Casshern 2004 Storyboard Artist
Lorelei: The Witch of the Pacific Ocean 2005 Director
Nihon Chinbotsu 2006 Director
Kakushi Toride no San-Akunin: The Last Princess 2008 Director
MM9 2009 Director
Kyoshinhei Tôkyô ni arawaru 2012 Director
The Floating Castle 2012 Director


Title Date Position
Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise 1988 Assistant Director
Gunbuster 1988 Storyboard Artist
Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water (17 episodes) 1990-1991 Director/Storyboard Artist
Otaku no Video 1991 Storyboard Artist
Macross Plus 1994 Storyboard Artist
Neon Genesis Evangelion 1995-1996 Writer/Assistant Director/Art Director/Storyboard Artist
The End of Evangelion 1997 Writer/Storyboard Artist
Vandread 2000 Storyboard Artist
Vandread: The Second Stage 2001 Storyboard Artist
Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi 2002 Magic Circle Sequence
Jirachi: Wish Maker 2004 Storyboard Artist
Diebuster 2004-2005 Storyboard Artist
Skull Man 2007 Storyboard Artist
Evangelion: 1.0 You Are (Not) Alone 2007 Storyboard Artist
Shangri-La 2009 Title Logo Design
Evangelion: 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance 2009 Image Board/Storyboard Artist
Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo 2012 Image Board/Storyboard Artist
Space Battleship Yamato 2199 2013 Storyboard Artist
Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time 2021 Storyboard Artist


Title Platform Date Position
Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams PlayStation 2 2006 Storyboard: Digital Frontier Inc.